Summary: Christmas Eve parable/sermon about an angel in waiting.

Now, you may think that angels never get the blues. It’s not true, of course. Kadel was feeling pretty glum about being the only one left in Angel Hall...You know, the place where the angels go to wait for their assignments.

Actually, Kadel’s shift started out with great excitement. As soon as he walked in the door he knew something was happening. Everyone was abuzz-- talking about the news. The Almighty himself was going to make a visit to the planet. Now, he had dropped in on the planet off and on over the years. Nothing, mind you, like when he used to walk though the garden with Adam and Eve. That was, however, a long time ago. And this was going to be something different. This was going to be "a visit without precedent," according to the memo that was posted on the board. Kadel, nor any of the others quite understood what that meant but it sounded like an extended visit. Everybody was excited.

Within a few minutes Pidar, the second sub-archangel and duty chief for the second shift, appeared with a list of angels for a choir assignment. Kadel sat on the edge of the chair waiting to hear his name. He had a beautiful tenor voice and he loved to sing. He loved the offering of praise before the Almighty. There was nothing he’d rather do than sing.

It was a long list. As a matter of fact it included everyone on the second shift--everyone except Kadel. Perhaps it was an oversight. Kadel stood up and started over to Pidar. But Pidar was busy assembling the choir on the far end of the hall for a rehearsal. Besides Kadel reasoned, "No one around here ever makes mistakes anyway." He took his seat and listened as the choir warmed up. "Glory to God in the highest heaven. Peace on earth to all who please him."

It was so beautiful. Kadel slouched in his seat as the angelic choir filed out the door. He was the only angel left in the entire huge hall. Everyone else was out singing praise to the Almighty and he just had to sit and wait. That’s why Kadel was blue.

He flipped on the television and watched the single channel which was forever broadcasting the ongoing service of praise in the throne room. Cherubim and Seraphim surrounded the throne as the twenty-four elders dressed in white chanted "You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things and by your will they existed and were created."

Usually a few seconds of holy praise was enough to lift Kadel’s spirits. Praise does that. But this evening all he could think about was the choir down on earth praising the Almighty while he was sitting in heaven on a hard plastic seat. All he could do was watch on television. It’s just not the same as doing it yourself.

A few minutes later a dispatcher, a glorified human, opened the great hall doors and walked toward the dispirited angel. Kadel "I have an assignment for you," he announced. Kadel jumped up and stood at attention--of course, he was hoping that he’d get to join the choir. Perhaps his would be the solo part. That’s probably why he didn’t need to be a part of the group rehearsal.

But he could tell from the dispatcher’s gray duty sheet that it wasn’t a musical assignment at all. Musical assignments came on green sheets. Grey sheets were used for utility assignments. "Great," Kadel thought to himself, "Everyone else is out singing praises to the Almighty and I’m going off to move a river or realign a planet." Kadel took the sheet and began to read.

His task was to "Ignite an obscure star which hangs at 31 degrees north and 35 degrees east, right over Bethlehem on the planet. It’s a class S--that is, spectacular star which the Almighty had apparently hung at creation but had never lit.

"Why now?" he thought. "This star has been sitting idle for millenniums. Is it really such a rush to ignite it tonight? Maybe while I’m down there I could slip in to the back of the choir and then slip back out and go take care of the star on the way home."

But he squelched that temptation as he realized he’d never enjoy singing under such stealth conditions.

"Oh," he sighed, as he walked to the locker. "Who am I to wonder why, I can’t even make the choir."

He cheered himself up with the thought that while it wasn’t a musical assignment at least he wasn’t going to be sitting in the hall all night. At least he’d be out doing something for the Almighty. And maybe, just maybe he’d finish the job in time to catch the end of the angelic chorus or maybe he’d even get to see the Almighty making his entrance on the planet.

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