The express train carrying Queen Victoria thundered through the stormy night... its powerful headlight piercing the darkness.
Suddenly the engine driver saw a startling sight. Revealed in the locomotive's beam of light he saw a strange figure standing in the middle of the track with arms waving. Immediately grabbing the brake he brought the train to a grinding halt.
HEEDING THE TIMELY WARNING
He and his fireman clambered down to see what had stopped them, literally in their tracks. But they could find no trace of the strange figure. On a hunch the engine driver walked a little further up the track. Suddenly he stopped and stared in horror. Further up ahead the bridge that they were soon to cross, had been seriously damaged in the storm earlier that day. In fact the middle section had been completed washed away. If the engine driver had not heeded the ghostly figure's warning, his train would have plummeted down into the swollen river below, carrying Queen Victoria with it.
Although a more extensive search was made for the strange flagman it wasn't until they eventually arrived in London that the mystery was solved.
SOLVING THE MYSTERIOUS PUZZLE
At the base of the locomotive's headlamp lay the body of a huge dead moth. The driver looked at it for a moment, then on impulse wet its wings and pasted it to the glass of the lamp. Climbing back into his cab, he switched on the headlight and saw the 'flagman' in its beam. He knew the answer now. The moth had flown into the beam, seconds before the train was due to reach the washed-out bridge.... its flapping wings giving the impression of a phantom figure, arms waving in an attempt to flag down the train.
RECOCOGNISING THE LORD'S PROTECTION
When Queen Victoria was told of this strange happening she said, 'I'm sure it was no accident. It was God's way of protecting us.'
Of course, the figure the engine driver saw in the headlight's beam was neither a person nor an angel... and yet God, quite possibly, through the ministry of His unseen angels, had placed the moth on the headlight lense exactly when and where it was needed. After all, God has promised that...
'He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.'
Now you may well think that this story is just... a story, and a rather far-fetched one at that! Well, when the burglar alarm was being fitted in my office I remember the electrician telling me that I should hope that a spider never crawls over one of the sensors. Why? Because to the sensor it will appear as large as a dinosaur and thus trigger the alarm. I'm glad to say that this never happened, thankfully, though it did remind me of this true story told by evangelist, the late Billy Graham.
So let's remember that the Bible stresses the reality of angels... spiritual creatures created by God for the service of Christ and His Church, according to Martin Luther. Yet don't our shops have far more titles focusing on the occult, demons and the devil? Sad world eh!