Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | January 19, 2018

On Entertaining Angels

It has only happened to me twice before — occasions where I am certain that by extending hospitality to another I unwittingly entertained angels without knowing it.

The first occasion came soon after I became a Christ-follower and provided the impetus I needed to pursue Christ more passionately. I can provide no reasonable explanation for the individual who knocked on my door, encouraged me, and then stepped out my front door and then was nowhere to be seen.

The second occasion happened just a few years later and involved extending hospitality to a complete stranger. After encouraging my friends that we needed to help the old gentleman, the old man blessed us, walked out the door, and — well, the same thing happened again. When we followed him out the door he was gone. I mean, gone!

This past week, it happened yet again. A young man in need stopped by the church. It would take pages to outline all of the details, so suffice it to say that when I took him out to get a burger he started asking me questions that made me feel as though he knew a whole lot about me. Questions about my travel, specific parks where I have had some great adventures, and more.

While sitting in my car, he asked me about the Texas State Parks guide that I keep crammed into the passenger side door bin along with all of my maps. There is no possible way anyone would know that I had a state parks guide in that jumble of maps. Without even looking, he reached over and pulled out the guide as though he had always known exactly where I kept it.

He asked me about a certain park and then turned to that page in the guide without flipping through pages. He did that a couple more times. None of this struck me as odd until I suddenly awoke at three in the morning. “Whaaaaat!” I said to myself as I opened my eyes and realized that he could not have known I had the park guide in my truck. And how is it possible that, without even looking, he turned to the exact pages of the specific parks where I have camped and hiked?

And then I started to replay in my mind every word and every question he had asked me in the two hours we had spent together. I have assisted more homeless guys and people in need over the past forty years of ministry than I can count. No one has ever asked me the questions he asked me about God’s love, my travels, my adventures, my life.

Although I wanted to do more to help the young man, he told me that he was going to step out of the truck and talk with some day-laborers who were waiting for work nearby. He was totally kind, displayed an unusual meekness and respect, and asked questions that caused me to reflect on my life, not his. Now, at three in the morning, I wanted to know more about this stranger who had caused me to look inward and who had left me wanting to do more for him.

I have no explanation other than to consider the words of Hebrews 13:2, “Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!” Was this young man an angel on some divine mission? I can’t say. However, my über-conservative theological gut tells me that it is likely he was indeed much more than a traveler in need of a meal.

Once again, God has reminded me of the importance of allowing Him to interrupt my life whenever He wants by putting whomever He wants in my path. And, as I learned from my years of serving at Mother Teresa’s homes in India, I need to keep my eyes open for Jesus and look for Him in the distressing disguise of those in need.

Maybe I am making too much out of my encounter with the young man and maybe not. What I know for certain is that this encounter has caused me to reflect deeply about the value of loving and showing hospitality to strangers. Angel or not — this encounter touched me deeply. And, that’s a good thing!


  1. Thank you for sharing this.

    Mark Morgan C: (713) 557-1252


  2. This gave me chills!!!! I truly believe that we are all in the presence of angels so many times in our lives. God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things all the time.

  3. I LOVE this post, Omar, and you are not making too much out of it. I have met two angels in my life and I know they were angels. It is such an unbelievable experience. Thank you so much for posting. Nikki

    • Thanks for your affirming words, Nikki.

  4. This was an amazing and beautiful story which has caused me to look deeper. Thank you Omar!

  5. Love this so much and your heart for Jesus and others . Revelation 12:11. God bless you , your wife and family and the work of your hands ! Thank you for sharing !

    Sent from my iPhone


  6. What a wonderful story and what a blessing you received by your willingness to help a stranger in need. Thank you for sharing this. Megan

  7. Thank you so much Omar for sharing this experience! I was very touched by your story and definitely you had a Divine Encounter…

    • Thanks, Janet. A memorable encounter indeed.

  8. I love it!!!

  9. […] good friend Pastor Omar recently wrote a blog about chance encounters with strangers that really are not chance encounters at all. Hebrews 13:1-2 reminds us “not to neglect to […]

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