New Orleans is a city in the USA. It is where most of the French immigrants to the New World settled, and therefore has rich culture, cuisine and citizenry. In recent history, New Orleans has mostly been known for being the city worst hit by hurricane Katrina.

Nobody knows exactly where Angela came from, where she lived, or who her parents were, but in the year 2005, while Hurricane Katrina was ravaging Louisiana's harbour city, several people in different places were touched, comforted and saved by the same young black girl in a flowery yellow dress, who called herself Angela. Several patients of the two largest city hospitals have all independently told the same story of how in the midst of all the panic, when the hospital's officials had run off and left the patients to their fate, a young black girl, who looked no older than thirteen, had come into their wards, introduced herself as Angela, and then said the words, "Do not be afraid. I'm here to help you. Please follow me"

She had then proceeded to guide them out of the fast flooding hospitals, through totally dark corridors after the power went out. She kept them in high spirits by making them sing songs like, "Jesus Loves Me", and "Holy Holy Holy". Gary, an accident survivor, and Intensive Care patient of the Charity Hospital in New Orleans, said, "She even made us sing "Don't worry, be happy". She said 'God loves that song'. So I said, how d'you know what songs God likes? And she said, Cos he wants us to sing it right now", that's how.

Angela comforted, reassured and guided many terrified, abandoned patients to safety during the city's worst natural disaster, and has never been seen again since.

My friends, God promised us that he would never put us through a test we're not able to withstand. This is why, as soon as your trials begin to exceed your abilities, He sends help. When Sodom was to be destroyed, God sent two angels to guide Lot and his family away from the soon-to-be destroyed city. At every point during the Israelites' escape from Egypt, God sent an angel before His people, to either lead them, or to remove danger ahead before they got there. When Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were thrown into the furnace, He sent an angel to abate the flames and keep them from harm. How lucky we are to have a Father who never abandons His children!

At Christmas time, Angels are everywhere. On Christmas cards, on wrapping paper, at the top of Christmas trees, and sometimes, right here in our midst. Sometimes, they are sent with messages, and sometimes, they are sent to comfort us, to give us strength, to watch over us, and to balance the battle in our favour.

There are many stories of modern day encounters with Angels. God is still very much in the business of keeping His promises and balancing the battle in our favour. It’s just that these days, he uses ordinary people like you and me. Today, as Christmas beckons, I want us to celebrate the angels in our lives. Those people God sends at the last minute to give us exactly what we need to make it over the finish line. You know who they are. You could probably make a list right now. Please do so and thank God for them. But also ask yourself: whose list will YOU be on this year? For all those to whom you have been an Angel in 2015, I thank God for you. May you be an Angel to even more of God’s children next year.

My name is Kojo Yankson, you’re all on my list.