Demons and Angels

Demons and angels are often thought of as myths and old stories in today’s advanced and highly technological world. But are they? Or are they for real?

A despotic leader uses chemical weapons on his own people and in the process kills even innocent children by the hundreds. In outrage, other world leaders threaten sanctions and would strike the despot’s country with missiles, with the likely result that more children would perish as collateral damage. I do not see the devil but I can see him very clearly at work here.

A group of nuns leave the comforts of their home countries and set up a monastery in a war-ravaged country ministering to the sick, the wounded, the abandoned, the hungry and the homeless. Even at the constant persecution, they stay to do their good works and all the while praying and working for the violence and destruction to stop. They have no wings but they have the hearts and the hands of angels. And what they do is the work of angels.

I have my own demons I have to struggle with constantly. In fact, this is the constant struggle of man. Saint Paul had already warned us: “For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin (the demons) living in me that does it.” Roman 7:19-20

And yet, I also know I am capable of good. I have chosen time and again to do good. I have made people happy. I have helped hem when I could and given when and what I had, even at times when I thought I did not have anything to give.

Jesus gave the commandment of Love as the ultimate weapon against the devil and his works. He also gave us some spiritual exercises and disciplines to combat the evil one: prayers, fasting and almsgiving. I will pray constantly and without ceasing, not so much to ask to favors but to keep me always in God’s presence and keep the devil away. For I cannot be doing evil things while I am in prayer. I will fast not only from food but from all self-seeking pleasures and gratifications. I will starve my spirit of worldly pleasures and pursuits so that I can focus on the weightier things. I will give to others in charity, pruning myself of excesses. As I give away things, I will have less baggage to carry on the journey. As I give of myself, I get pruned and like a tree will grow even more fruitful.

In the synagogue there was a man who had the spirit of an unclean demon, and he cried out with a loud voice, “Let us alone! What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!””
Luke 4:31-37

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