Looking Back At My Woodwork Angel
We All Have An Angel
Psychic servant, Spiritual guide,
My guardian Angel, you stand by my side.
You give your gifts without a thought,
In whispers and dreams your words are caught.
I Remember you when I was a child;
You have always been here inside my mind.
Peaceful and comforting, so loyal and true,
With love and devotion, I give thanks to you.
Definition of Guardian Angel (n)
protector: somebody seen as the special protector of somebody’s interests
personal angel: an angel believed to look after a particular person
Definition of Woodwork Angel (n)
Chicken Soup for the Soul
personal protector: a stranger(s) who appears out of nowhere – out of the woodwork – when we need help.
I once wrote a “Thought” entitled “The Woodwork Angel” which was re-posted here just three months ago. If you are not familiar with this post, you may click the URL here to read the story, (https://mandyspath.wordpress.com/2013/08/14/thought-for-the-day-081413/) which is not over quite yet. You see, I have been reminded of my very own Woodwork Angel in the last few weeks.
Laura Barlament, who is the Associate Director of Communications and Marketing and the Editor of the Wagner Magazine, a publication issued by my alma-mater, Wagner College in Staten Island, New York, contacted me recently about including an edited version of my post, “The Woodwork Angel”, in a future issue of the magazine that is currently in the planning stages.
Apparently Ms. Barlament was directed to my site by someone who knew of an older piece I had written about the effect a murder of a friend and classmate of mine, that happened on campus in 1976, had on my life, my heart, my faith and on my ability to forgive. And since that time, she has followed my “Thoughts”, just as you do! And particularly interested in anything I write that refers back to my college days more than a quarter century ago, Laura discovered the story of my personal Woodwork Angel.
Now, she wanted to know the identity of my very own angel, which was something I had not revealed in my piece. You see, I had not sought permission from this wonderful woman prior to writing my story. It had happened so long ago, and I had two concerns. First, I did not know if she was still alive! Secondly, if she was alive, while I wanted to honor her gift to me, I was also concerned that she might not want to have it known what she had done.
I wrestled with this dilemma for quite a long time, and finally discovering that she was not only alive at 80 some odd years young, but that since our paths had crossed, she had married a fellow performer, I decided to identify her to Ms. Barlament. My Woodwork Angel was a voice and music teacher at Wagner for many years, and her beautiful soprano voice has been heard in Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, Town Hall, and the New Jersey Garden State Arts Center, among other venues.
Laura, contacted my Woodwork Angel, and she was delighted to be remembered in this way, so I am now at liberty to reveal the name of this remarkable woman…..Eva Lazar Gabriel! And I am not the only one who thinks she is special. Both she and her husband were feted by the Council on the Arts and Humanities of Staten Island in 2000. And I have no doubt that she may well have been as equally supportive to others of the thousands of students whose lives touched hers over the years! After all, a heart that loves and a spirit that gives to others never stops at just one gift!
Every time I think of her, I am reminded of a particular Bible verse that has been one I have sought to model my living after. Hebrews 13:1-2 NIV, “Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” And let us not end this generosity with strangers alone, because often it is those whose ties are the closest to our own that become forgotten the most as we travel life’s roads. Indeed, it was the love and support and blessings that I was fortunate to receive from my family that started me on the path that I travel, just as it was Ms. Lazar’s generosity that helped me to make the correct turn at the crossroads I faced, once upon a time!
“Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.“
Isaiah 58:7-8 NIV
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