I counted at least 15 angels in the church sanctuary. One group stood on the stage, where the band was preparing to start the worship service. The other two groups were on the ground in front of the stage, one to the far right, the other to the far left. All the angels were wearing white robes with gold stitching. All were different sizes, but within the boundaries of average human height.
I was 14 years old. Though I had been seeing angels, demons and other spiritual things for as long as I could remember, it had been only two years since I learned that my open visions were the result of a God-given gift.
My whole world changed when we started attending a church that was active about training its congregation in the gifts of the Spirit. Though none of the leaders at the church saw in the spirit the way I did, they all did their best to help me steward and grow my gift. Recording the things I saw in a notebook had been one of their suggestions.
The person on stage announced that all children and youth were released to go to their classes. The church owned two buildings separated by a parking lot. One building housed the sanctuary and children's classrooms, and the other held the administrative offices and the room where the youth met. I pushed through the sanctuary doors and started the trek across the parking lot toward the other building with the 20 or so other kids who were in the youth group.
Suddenly a heaviness came over me, starting at the top of my head and running down to my shoulders, causing me to look up. A massive bird with scraggly black feathers and a hooked beak was circling just above the parking lot.
I immediately recognized the large bird as a principality, a demonic entity. It was, unmistakably, staring right at me and the other youth kids.
I watched in chilled silence as its eyes locked on two girls who were walking a few yards in front of me. Images flashed through my mind in rapid succession: a shouting match between children and parents, kids running away from home, drug abuse, homelessness, sickness, sorrow. Each image swept through my mind in less than a tenth of a second, blurry and distorted, but each was laced with the pain of watching someone's life fall apart. The dread built to a peak; then the massive bird arched into a dive.
I wanted to shout out a warning, but my lips wouldn't move. Tears formed in the corners of my eyes as I looked at the two girls, ignorant of their peril, giggling in conversation as they crossed the parking lot.
The bird came down in a blur, wings arched back, beak pointed like the tip of a spear directly at the girls. One of the girls must have said something funny, because moments before impact, both girls reared back their heads and let out a burst of uncontained laughter. Everything happened so fast that I could not be entirely certain of the order in which it happened. The bird fell faster than a meteor, the girls laughed, there was a blinding flash of pale green light, and the bird slammed into the light like it was 40 inches of hardened steel. It ricocheted somewhere behind me in a broken heap.
The dread melted away so thoroughly that it instantly felt like a distant memory. The girls continued walking and talking cheerfully, showing no sign of recognition of what had just happened. I stood in stunned astonishment, turning just in time to see the principality flying off into the distance. The beat of its wings was stuttered and arrhythmic, compensating for damaged tendons and cracked bones.
I shook my head, trying to sort what I had seen. Was it the girls' conversation that repelled the demon? Was it what had happened in worship?
I fumbled my notebook free of my backpack and scribbled a messy account of what I had seen. I looked up as I finished and realized that almost all the other kids had already entered the youth building. I moved to follow them but then stopped and quickly wrote down one last thought:
"It really seemed like the laugh is what did it."
Then I threw the notebook into my backpack and jogged to catch up to the others.
This is an adapted excerpt from Indestructible: Fight Your Spiritual Battles From the Winning Side by Blake K. Healy. Copyright ©2020 Published by Charisma House. Used by permission.
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