Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

The Feast of the Annunciation: Gabriel and Directions


Since today is the Feast of the Annunciation, when Mary said “yes,” I thought I’d reprint my “yes” moment, my “Saving Grace” moment.

I’m directionally impaired. Always have been.

When I was four, I got lost in the hallways of the production studio where “The Uncle Al Show” was taped. As all the other kids (including my three sisters) ate ice-cream cones made of marshmallows (like peeps) and did the elbow dance in front of cameras, I was crying my eyes out off the set, looking for my mom.


I still can’t read a map, and I manage to get lost in my own town. I need direction. Big time.

So I call on archangel Gabriel.

He’s the 411 guy, the dude with all the skinny on God’s plans. With his access to heaven, this feathered fellow can decode practically any divine agenda. Best known as the Angel of the Annunciation, it was he who appeared to Mary to reveal what became the greatest miracle of the Christian faith.

After Gabriel said hello, told Mary whom he represented, and freaked her out a bit (“But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be” Luke 1:29), the heavenly messenger did what angels do best: consoled her, quieted her fears, and let her in on the game plan.


“Do not be afraid, Mary,” he said, “for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great…and of his kingdom there will be no end.” (Luke 1:33)

“Sounds great, Gabby,” she replied. “But no can do. I’m chaste, if you know what I mean….”

“Ah, yes,” he interrupted, “but nothing is impossible with God.”

In other words, this life isn’t all there is. Yonder is another world that’s not bound by the rules of gravity. Or any rules. That world is one of pure, sparkling hope. Where the angels are tour guides. And no one gets lost.


Gabriel, or one of his assistants, appeared to me when I was 18. He was disguised as a beautiful 27-year-old brunette, a passionate and kind woman who was my high school religion teacher.

She was worried about me, and rightly so: I slurred my words and giggled inappropriately over the intercom as I said morning prayer for the school; I stumbled cross-eyed into the auditorium and made out publicly with my date at the Homecoming dance; and I got thrown off the drill team for packing liquor into my suitcase at band camp.

Somewhere in the mess I was making of my life, an angel got concerned and handed me a map.

“What’s going on?” she asked me, as we sat down on the stairs at the main entrance to the school.


“Nothing,” I almost replied. Further confessions might mean more demerits. But there was something in the way she inquired that made me think our talk belonged in the “grace” category, with those dialogs Gabriel had with his peeps (not the marshmallow treats I didn’t get to eat on “Uncle Al”).

“This isn’t you,” she said. “You can be more.”

That ten-minute chat changed my life.

I decided, then and there, that I was going to venture out of my comfort zone (sober!). I wasn’t sure about all the details in the contract, but somewhere and somehow on those steps of my high school, I said Amen.

Like Mary said to Gabriel.

“Here I am, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your will.” (Luke 1:38)


In recovery lingo, we’d say this was Mary’s third step (“Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God”). It’s also the twelfth and final album released by The Beatles (“Let It Be“).

Mary’s “fiat” to Gabriel and my conversion on the stairs were about getting turned around in a new direction: toward birth and miracles and hope. God’s intercessor was right to offer the mother of Jesus a few details and instructions (downloaded from straight from heaven). And he may very well have been a key player in the heart-to-heart I had with Miss K.

He’s good with directions, Gabriel. Especially when I’m not.

  • http://HASH(0xcff8c48) Karen

    I don’t know why at times we ignore certain emails while opening others which draws us to specific stories that move us to ponder our own experiences. I, too met someone once who changed the way my life turned out. I was drinking heavily at the time and I am sure my parents had their fill of worry. I had gone to a Catholic woman whom was known for having the stigmata and able to heal those in need. I approached her with much hesitation and asked for my obsession with drinking to be taken away and much like the others, fell back into the arms of those who believed in her. Don’t get me wrong I didn’t become automatically saved per say. I stuggled a few more years until becoming pregnant with my two year old son and totally losing all obsession or desire to destroy my life or the lives of those around me. The point is that I believe God sends help in his own time, not ours………

  • http://HASH(0xcff8f6c) Brian

    Thank you for your story about is wonderful that someone so young can even be reached….when I was in high school many years ago I was deaf, dumb and blind to all and everyone that was good for me….life was too much pain and stress and instead of dealing I just got high. I am much better now but the decisions you make when you are young impact you your whole life.

  • http://HASH(0xcff970c) Lesly

    My son is 26 years of age and got lost on the road of life. He smokes weed frequently, can’t find a job because he has no skills, and as a Mother, my heart pains me to see my son get so lost in life. What can I do as a Mother to lead him back on the road to life and find himself?

  • http://HASH(0xcffa72c) anon

    I too am a firm believer that God does ,”but in his own time.” For many months I have waited for an answer to a request. My need is based from a blessing from HIM. This blessing is one of joy, in it’s own right, but it also brings pain. I have put my faith and trust in HIM to give to me what I need and have learned in these months, that I also have to be patient for a response. You notice, I didn’t say miracle. Only because it seems that is what it will take for my request to be answered.Perhaps it has already been answered and I’m not recognizing it..If this is the case, then I should consider myself lucky. I have experienced a love beyond all others because it is one for no reason.My heart guides me back to this love but my mind tells me that HE will gift me with the physical part of it “in His own time,” if He so chooses…My love is for HIM and all that He is to me, what He gave me, and what I live on…love….

  • http://HASH(0xcffb6fc) Aliese

    Your story about Gaberial was GREAT!! What a way you have with words, to make it easy to get. I love to hear about the different angels and their roles. I now have another angle to talk with. Thank you! Aliese

  • http://HASH(0xcffc42c) Peter Choi

    Mary’s encounter with archangel Gabriel was a purely fictional account. Furthermore, all the names of angels were heavily inspired from Persian religions. Before Babylonian exile, servants of Yahweh had no names.

  • http://HASH(0xcffc750) Iris Alantiel

    You’ve just given one of my favourite Beatles’ songs a whole new meaning I can’t believe I never thought about before.

  • http://HASH(0xcffde64) Frgough

    Peter Choi, No doubt, it is very gratifying to your ego that you have all the answers.

  • http://ratscatsangels pamela

    yes, he came and helped me when i ask him for help, i needed a job and money very badly, and he gave me the energy to go look for one, and i was hired that day, started working the same night, thank you dear angel for helping when i really needed it. my love and blessings are always in my heart for you and all my dear angels guides and spirtual being friends.

  • http://HASH(0xcfff540) Ann Endress

    I always had problems with direction and never seemed to know what to do in life., Always was somewhat behind everyone. I worry and have major anxiety. One day Gaberial spke to me so and said’ do not worry all will be taken care of; I am Gaberial. I had no idea who he was so I asked relgious friend who tole me. I know look for Gabierail to direct mr

  • http://HASH(0xd000494) Alex

    Just because someone goes out of their way to help you doesnt make them an angel. What would you have said if they had hurt you instead? The devil put a demon in my path? Stop attributing good deeds to God if you arent going to attribute bad ones to him too. Thank the people who helped you for their benevolence instead.


    Hello Therese, You totally cracked me up with your article & approach. I liked it much until I posted your article on a Rh-negative blood group and called today NATIONAL ARCHANGEL GABRIEL DAY!!! Have a great week.!

  • Lynn

    It appears to me that some people do not know the Lord and that is so sad. Not only do I Thank the people who help me…But I am aware that life is full of ups and down…and that the demons are always right there waiting to show their faces… So I WILL THANK GOD THAT he watches over me…and I know THAT THE DEMONS are always in my path…”The Devil Seeks Who He Can Devour”. When good people help us it is because they are filled with Love…which comes from GOD… They say to keep your eyes on the prize…MY GOD IS MY PRIZE…and now I understand Gabriel a lot better and will call upon her. Thank You

  • Jennifer

    This web site came to me from a good friend via email. I am in a searching mode, trying to make sense of things, decisions I have made etc., and I have been encouraged by what I have read. Thank you for sharing your inspirational stories.
    Also, I believe people contact this web site to gain information and comfort.
    I do not see any reason for some readers to post their negative remarks and belittle people for sharing their experiences.

  • marty

    Day after day, I usually delete these messages before I even open them. I’m not sure why I opened this particular one (perhaps an angel?), but I’m glad I did. I keep coming up on one dead-end after another in life, and at times it seems too much to bear. This message today brought hope again. Thank you.

  • Jane

    For any and all who have emotional problems you wish to conquer, I strongly suggest you investigate (“Emotional Freedom”). It is pure magic, and the downloadable manual is FREE. Banish fears, anxiety, depression, guilt, anger, resentment, hurt, PAIN, et al from your life — forever, with simple “tapping” on specific meridian points on your body. It’s very very easy, and takes only a few minutes of your day.
    For Therese Borchard — it will also help you remove the blocks in your energy system, so that you CAN learn directionality! Promise!
    Good Luck!

  • FreeSpiritRunning

    I believe in all religions…I respect their beliefs…I also know for a fact that certain people come into our lives for a reason at particular times for a purpose….especially when needed…So, for me, I know that we all have Angels looking & guiding us, AT ALL TIMES…for a fact…been there…So, no one on this Earth plane can tell me different until you have experienced it yourself! Got it? the people that have to question spirituality? It’s there, don’t worry about it, even if YOU can’t see it, you can feel it, and sense the spirit. Atheists, Ha, they crack me up..if only they believed, or for that matter knew…I hope the spirit can touch all of you out there in a special way, so that you do know they exist…No books, No amount of people can tell you, you have to experience it for yourselves….So, may the holy spirit come into all of your lives…for we were all created under ONE! Peace in the Universe…and so it is…BTW, Gabriel, Nathaniel, Michael, Raphael, all wonderous ANGELS! Yes, ANGELS! Guess what there’s even an Archangel! Imagine that….

  • Darlene

    I, too, am directionally challenged. The only time I new North, South, East and West was when I lived in Chicago!
    Anyway, I believe in Angels, in the flesh and in spirit. God has been in my favor all the time when I have been driving from AZ to UT.
    I really like the convenience of using Map Quest for directions, but you must be careful, the directions aren’t always right.
    I was living in Larkspur, CA and wanted to go to Burlington for my husband’s Christmas present. I got the directions online, and proceeded to follow them. I crossed over the Golden Gate bridge, drove down Powell street, the winding one (Can cars drive down this, I wondered?) and ended up in Chinatown! Never did find Burlington Coat store. I can laugh about this now.
    A fan of Therese Borchard

  • Felicia L. Scott

    Hi Ms.Therese how are you-Well I pray that you’re doing fine and well highly favored and blessed in the Lord!Your excerpt brought an amazing smile to my heart!Just knowing that God could send angels to lead guide and direct our paths daily at such an early age is quite an astonishing joy! And just to see you post it on the internet for the world to see is even better! May the good Lord bless you and your family real good ! Be encouraged don’t let anyone keep or get you discouraged keep the faith and keep on pressing on moving forward towards that higher calling of God which is “Heaven” Love You With All The Love Of Christ!!!Keep up the good work until God says ‘Well Done Thy Good and Faithful Servant !!!

  • Yochavel54

    I am so glad that so many people have chosen to share their experinces of Angels. Sometimes for no reason I get wifs of fragrances or feel like I have been gentally touched. I call on Pistis Sofia often on days when I am especially troubled. I ask Angels and Saints to help me through difficult situations. I have noted that I have a different awareness through the day’s when I call on them. Sometimes in the Buisiness of getting through the days all of a sudden there it will be wifs of a Beautiful fragrance or that touch that draws me back into remeberence that I have called on the Angel for help. And when I sit and reflect, I note how much better I have delt with these difficulties than when I have forgotten to ask for assistance.

  • Danielle

    Thank-you for this message. I read these everyday to give me hope and strengh to move forward everyday. Most of the time I am stressed to the max with my home life and work. I am a single mothers of 3 young boys and a claims processor with demands and no let out. I talk to the LORD everyday and sometimes I don’t think he hears me. My heart has become so bitter and DIRECTION for me among other things seem to be my weakness. I have never known my Father and I really think that it effects my relationship with my heavely one. Anyone who read this please say a prayer for me tonight that the pain/disappointments/regrets/bitterness and unforgivness turns and I am finally heading down a road of letting go……… Thank-you.

  • Samara

    Thank you for your message, Therese. It has inspired me in a very negative time in my life…broke, alone, and about to lose my home and most of my possessions. Albeit, I will call on Gabriel and other angels to help me on my path into the future.
    I must confess, though. Your initial statement, that caught my eye, was about being lost in the halls of “The Uncle Al” show. I’m wondering if that was in Cincinnati. I, too, appeared on Uncle Al’s show (with Captain Wendy–his wife), and won one of the first prizes in my lifetime…a variety pack of Play-doh, which Mother only let me play with on the front porch one day…then it was pitched! :(
    I hope all will pray for me today, that the angels will bestow upon me the peace, understanding, and love I hope for in my future.
    God Bless.

  • KarenLJ

    What a terrific expression of creative writing. If you haven’t taken a class, you should. Your creativity is excellent.
    I was really enamored when I read that you went to the Uncle Al show. I did too and I took my oldest son when he was 3.I can’t remember my trip there but I do remember my son’s. His father came home from Viet Nam that same day.
    My youngest son went through some of the same things you mentioned in your life story. He too had an angel, in the form of a judge that told him he had probation for 1 year and if he couldn’t hack it he would do that year in jail. I didn’t realize it at the time but he was the inspiration that made my son get clean and sober. I thank God and him (the judge) for that.
    Life is not always easy. sometimes it’s downright devastatingly hard.We are the writers of our own life history. Thank God there are helpmates along the way.
    Keep on, you’ve reached a lot of people.
    Thank You,

  • NA

    I have readthe reply’s from people who responded, and my heart aches for so many. We are all in this world together, and it’s too bad that we can’t all be more loving, patient, and understanding to each other.
    If we can’t lift each other up it’s a sad world indeed! May we all strive to be someones inspiration.

  • barbara

    again therese thank u this is for all the doubters& unbelievers but i know u believe in something but before u bad mouth try god i bet when u get in trouble u call on the lord& he will send an angel to help u the bible say we intertain angels un aware i never had an angel experience but i believe thatthey are real. years ago i was praying every thing in the house was off i heard music that i havent never heard on this earth& have never since. i said i was the heavenly choir. i was walking from the store years ago i smelled a sweet smell and no one was around but me i look around to see was someone there no body but me the smell was a frangrance i have never smelt before i said it was something heavenly be careful u just might need an angel’s help one day

  • ThoughtKeeper

    Thanks, Therese, for sharing the heart-warming account of your angel experience! All believers know that God is capable of anything…even sending angels to assist those in times of need. However, there will
    always be non-believers who try to discourage the idea that good things are attributed to God. When God created humans, he gave us something that he did not give to animals…it’s called free will. We are free to make the choices in our lives. Sometimes the choices we make cause bad things to happen.
    But good will ALWAYS win out over evil because Lucifer is an archangel who was cast out of heaven by God. As such, he has extreme powers…BUT his powers are NOT equal to the powers of God. God will always have the final say.
    What we as humans do not understand is that we do not know what effect one event has upon another. Someone dies tragically…someone else receives the victim’s heart. The someone who has received the heart may go on to save thousands of others by what he/she does with their life.
    I do not have any answers for those who do not believe…or for the mind of God. Either you believe or you do not. As far as I am concerned non-believers are responsible for their own souls, but it is not okay to issue negative feedback to those who do believe. Simply join another forum.
    If you do not like the TV show on channel 2, you switch to another channel. But if you choose to stay on channel 2…do not complain about the show.
    I believe in Angels…especially in the Archangel Gabriel.

  • sheri norton

    how sad it is to read the comments from non-angel believers. One thig that has always puzzeled me is why do theses non-believers gravitate to theses articles in the first place? I’m sure I can speak for others when I say that I am less apt to read articles, much less the comments to the articles that I have no particular interest/beliefs in!
    The universe is so vast, with endless possibilities and unknowns that to say definitively there is no higher power is absurd imo.When is mans arrogance going to give way to the notion that the world we live in is just a “part” we see and not a “whole”?

  • Paula Jensen

    Though they may not believe in God…. the real question is, does God believe in them? And the fact that they are here on earth, says that He does.

  • Marucha

    Peter Choi. The whole thing is symbolical (fictional writings seldom converge on one ideal or principle) and the scriptures from all religions have always seemed like fiction to people; except those of their own religion.
    So what if servants had no names at the time?!
    Did you noticed that the subject is about an spiritual realm (Angels are in that category)and not common servants? .

  • Cathy Hailey


  • jadeonPax

    Your so right ThoughtKeeper, actually im just a reader in this site to know the experiences some people have with regards to their spiritual life. i’m always amaze and inspired of the stories our friends share n this community this is also a great help to other people that needs guidance and encouragement to live their life in good.
    I really don’t wanna comment but i think this forum is no place for people who’s only there to discourage other people, what they do is purely misleading and a work of a $*+**. So please, if you have nothing to do but post destructive comments and criticism.. stay out of here..
    If you don’t believe in angels so why are you here?

  • debbie smith

    I do believe in angels,if it was not so i would not be here today. I was into drugs back it the day and i had a out of body experince i was in that tunnel of light where it was so plesant and there was a shadow in the mist and he said it was not mine time to go but I said iI did not want to go back. I do know there are (ANGELS) all a around us to help guide and procted us and when it is are time to go home and be with (GOD) we will all see (HIM) someday. Your sister in christ Debbie

  • Fran

    I believe in Angels and have had an experience with two at different times. One when I left NC and had no idea how to get to I-95 to return to Fl. I have an Angel Coin that some one gave me and I kept it in the palm of my hand. Well I found I-95 with no problem and got to Fl. safely. I’ll tell you the second one another time. Yours in Christ.

  • Alaa Ghoniem

    The only one deserves to be worshipped is God who is above heaveans who created everything and provides everything.
    Jesus is not God.
    JESUS is the human messenger of God.
    Jesus is not the son of God
    God never begtteth nor He is begotten.
    Angels are among the servants of God
    The only one deserves to be worshipped is God not Jesus nor angels.
    We are obliged to believe in the messengers of God including Mohammed and Jesus peace be upon them.

  • Frank

    I believe in angels. I want to see evidence of them more often, actually. I have friends who are undergoing tough times and I can’t be there today. I wish an angel would go and be there to help them while I’m in other places. I’m not all that good at helping in those troubled moments but I definitely care. When my friends are hurting – so do I. I don’t necessarily agree with the idea that Jesus is not God but everyone is entitled to their own opinion. What I do believe though is that there is a divine inspiration and intervention that comes (perhaps in the form of an angel) when we are devoted to prayer and kind thoughts for another person. God be praised. He ministers to the hurting in ways we can’t begin to understand.
    May our world perceive the love of God and be at peace.

  • Michael

    You never cease to amaze me Therese,,,,thank you for the help you’ve given me and sooo many others,,,an example of this morning at a mtng I had been asked to lead and “tell my story”…well it’s a rainy day with freezing rain here in cleveland and I thought the mtng. would be quite thin due to the nasty weather….Upon arrival I found the room to be full of people….I’d not planned anything specific to say and ended up talking about recovery mostly….Due to reading your stories of your life and your recovery I’ve been able to be quite a bit more forthcoming & “transparant” when I talk/share of my experience/strength, and hope,,,,,the comments/feedback today were very many and the chairperson had to end the meeting due to time running over/past and people still had comments to make on how much they liked the “message”….2nd step principle here for me is my higher power works through people/places/things,,,,and we are all “messengers” in this sense,,,,and you are a good messenger that has benn “passed on” today in a way for the benefit of others,,,,,,I’m grateful to be of service and grateful for your inspiration and enthusiasm at your recovery. always,,,,,michael!

  • Tina

    I guess you can tell by my Email address,that I believe in Angels. My husband and I love to walk in the woods near our home,with our dog.during the day…while he is at work,Keyta and I walk there.About 10yrs.ago,part of our beloved woods were being destroyed for construction of a factory.This upset me,I worried about the animals that live there…they were losing their homes. As Keyta + I entered a clearing,her ears perked-up + tail was wagging.Perplexed by this,I looked to where she was looking.there was no entrance to this clearing, but the one we were standing at. there in the clearing stood a man+a little beagle dog.keyta was not good with strange dogs,so I was going to leash her.Then,the man said…”be not afraid,they will be fine together.” The dogs layed down together and we began to talk. He knew that I was upset + told me,the animals were fine…”Father God will provide and this new factory will be a good thing”.As we left the clearing+I turned,he was gone.My home church is in that building now!

  • Lynne

    You bet I believe in “Everyday Angels”. Not necessarily seeing them everyday but seeing that warmth of spirit in people’s willingness to help each other at times of need. I believe if you seek the goodness that’s still out there you can find it. I know lately it gets harder to do so in a cynical world but God obviously still does and has’nt changed his game plan.

  • Anonymous

    I loved your short yet sweet comment. Somehow, it really strikes home for me. I love to find that warmth in the moment, sometimes when it is least expected and most needed. These “Everyday Angels” as you call them, make life amazing… even with all its challenges.

  • Anonymous

    Oh, I guess this comment I just posted does not show my beliefnet screen name.
    Take care!

  • Terry

    Thanks for sharing your “yes” moment Therese.
    Aren’t you glad God not only sees us how we are, but He sees clearly what we can become. Only He knows our future and what we are capable of doing for Him with His help and our cooperation (which frequently is just getting out of His way!).
    God sends us angels…no doubt. Some are divine spirit beings…some angels have “skin on”. It is an amazing thought that the God of the universe chooses to do a great deal of His work through His children.
    To be used as an “angel with skin on” is to make every day a kind of “yes” moment.

  • Kay

    What are the chances of an “angel” named Angela living in FL?
    Following a minor one car accident (no one hurt but the car ) I was taken to the hospital as a precaution, where as an aside on the CAT scan a meningoma , a commonly benign brain tumor was found. The only threat being if it grows, I have learned. (it hasn’t)
    I went to Amazon to look at books which would help me understand. The unlikely titles: Brain Tumors : Leaving the garden of Eden and Brain Tumors: Finding the Ark by Dr. Paul Zeltzer were ordered from the used book category. ( They are fantastic resources)
    Leaving Eden arrived with a note enclosed by the person who packed my order,Angela. Angela told me that she had had a meningoma and would be glad to answer any questions I might have. And she sent along her e-mail. I had many many questions her kind explanations quieted and comforted me as I went through the follow up consultations and tests. I think of her kindness often.

  • Barbara formerly Babs

    Wow, Kay. That is a remarkable story.

  • Tracey

    Thank you, Therese! I needed a 3rd step reminder. Seriously.
    Also, I still get lost in friends houses. Two story homes scares me to death ~ double the floor plan to try to remember!
    … actually metaphorically I’m in a multi-story house right now, and could really use Gabriel’s help to get me the hell out to the main entrance!

  • hey

    you know God did a miracle a christmas–a angel flew down and gave me a brightly wrapped box. I asked the angel what was in it and he said confidence and adventure-I opened it up and inside lay a TOMTOM. Since then I carry confidence and adventure in my purse and hook it up in my car and drive all over the place!

  • carmen

    I BELIEVE IN ANGELS!!!!! Gabby and his helpers, have being, very busy with me for years, sometimes I tried to escape from their caring eyes, and they let me, like: “Lets take a coffee break, she’ll come back screaming for us” and that’s what I do and My Guardian Angel IS ALWAYS THERE, WHERE AND WHEN I NEED HIM/HER, to guide me. Carmen

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