What a dumb idea to get a dog! Everybody was freaking out about the Golden State Killer, though we referred to him as the East Area Rapist. From 1976 to 1986 this elusive serial rapist had committed 12 homicides, 45 rapes and 120 residential break-ins from Sacramento to Orange County. Sometimes women were alone, sometimes with children, and sometimes in bed asleep with their husbands. His MO was to hit houses that backed up to large empty lots. He could climb the fence and get through a sliding glass door.
It didn’t matter that our Citrus Heights neighborhood didn’t fit the MO; women were terrified. We talked incessantly about it. Judy across the street got a big German shepherd to protect her since she was often home alone with her husband out of town on business. That was a total disaster since she couldn’t control the dog, and he ate up her furniture and wreaked havoc on every room and her backyard.
That’s when I got a dumb, hyper German short-hair puppy about 6 months old. My husband went out-of-state deer hunting, and I had to defend myself. I spent the entire night trying to make him lie down next to my bed with his leash on my wrist. As soon as I fell asleep, he tried to leave. Finally exhausted in the wee hours of the morning, I gave up. Never tried that again!
A few days later was my usual Friday morning prayer with Diane and her high school daughter, Denise. Our custom in the summer was to meet in her beautiful garden in the back yard. When I arrived, Diane was so excited. She and Denise had gone out earlier to have devotion time of reading the Bible before we would meet for prayer. You know that feeling you get when you know you’re being watched? Diane had glanced up from her reading and was startled to see angels. She reached for Denise’s hand. “Yes, Mom, I see them.” The entire yard was surrounded by large, glowing angels dressed in white with very large swords. They were standing at attention; they were sentries on guard for Diane and Denise.
Angels are real. I’ve seen them and experienced their presence on at least three occasions. I know dozens of people who have given testimony to their interaction with angels. Angels are always present. They don’t often make their presence known nor attract attention to themselves. Sometimes the “curtain” is pulled back into the Heavenly dimension, and we are privileged to see them.
The main thing for us on that hot summer morning was the knowledge that we had nothing to fear. Our trust was in Christ, and we were protected.
After forty years of mystery, Joseph James DeAngelo was arrested as the Golden State Killer. DNA from items he discarded brought him to justice. He was living in a quiet neighborhood in Citrus Heights not far from my home. ■