Friday, October 07, 2016

The Stronger Man and Woman!

When my brother and I were in our early to mid-teens we went to a friend's house one night. They had a Ouija board there and we all sat around it having no idea what we were doing. We tuned off the lights to add to the spookiness and lit candles. As we watched a couple friends move the piece around on the board we noticed a couple of the candles flickering. Of course this spooked us but we kept on going with the hair on the back of our necks standing on end. As two people continued their movements and weird questions the candles continued to flicker and then all of a sudden the candles were blown out, somehow. You've never seen teens move so fast to turn on some lights. The "game" was quickly put away and everyone went home without saying much.

When we got home and crashed on our bunk beds, my brother and I laid in the dark and quietly talked about the frightening events. As we were talking our bedroom light came on for about 5 seconds and then went back off. I blamed him and he blamed me, and to this day we don't know how it happened.

I tell this story because the sooner we realize that the devil is real the better off we'll be. We must know that we do have an enemy who hates us. None of us want to be hated so we often push aside our belief in the devil. Yet, closing our eyes will not make him go away. Disbelief in his existence only strengthens his position.

In today's Gospel Jesus reminds us that Satan is alive and well. He reminds us that Satan is real, powerful, and bent on dragging us away from God. Jesus shows the scribes and us that Satan is focused and there is no division among his legion. Satan and his devils have one goal in mind and nothing will distract them from their accomplishing that goal. Jesus reasons that if there were struggles, divisions, schisms within the realms of hell, Beelzebub would not be able to accomplish his mission, the destruction of souls.

This realization ought to cause us to stop and think about the drive, resources, and tactics of our enemy. He is unrelenting, untiring, and set on the total destruction of our souls. All of this can be overwhelming and that too is a trick of the devil. It is a sort of "shock and awe" campaign. How can we win? How can we even begin to fight?

Yet, with all of this being said, I see this as a hope filled Gospel message. Jesus' words foreshadow the diminishing and ultimately the destruction of Satan's power. Notice how He moves His parable from "kingdom" to "palace" to a single entity, Satan. Then, in verse 22, He reveals that He will be the one who binds the "strong man" to "plunder his house." We can see his house as this world and Jesus is going to bind Satan and free from his control those caught in the web of sin, us.

On this great Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, let us remember this great weapon and that it can be a chain that binds Satan and his minions.  Jesus is the stronger man, Mary, the strongest woman whose heel will crush the ancient serpent's head!

FROM THE SAINTS - "[So] humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time. Cast all your worries upon him because he cares for you. Be sober and vigilant. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for (someone) to devour. Resist him, steadfast in faith, knowing that your fellow believers throughout the world undergo the same sufferings. The God of all grace who called you to his eternal glory through Christ (Jesus) will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you after you have suffered a little." - Saint Peter (1 Peter 5:6-10)

Today both Rosary Meditations for the Family and Rosary Meditations for Real Life are available for free on Amazon Kindle and Kindle Apps for your computer.

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Mother's Day Weekend.