Posts Tagged ‘demons’

Hosea 6: The Broken-Hearted

Thursday, June 6, 2019

We frequently look at this prophecy written by one betrayed in the most intimate of ways.  We will need this lesson because in our lives we will often find suffering at the hands of those we trust.  This prophet speaks to us from the depths of sorrow in authenticity about his own intense suffering as a result of the infidelity of his wife, the harlot Gomer.

Chapter 6 begins with a verse that stands out to us because it speaks to our broken-ness as people: broken covenants, broken vows, broken oaths, broken words, broken spirits, broken hearts.  But the beauty of this prophecy and of this first verse is this: for as much as we are broken, we might heal others . . . and in so carrying and living out Christ’s message, we might ourselves be healed.

In the morning reading in Phyllis Tickle’s The Divine Hours: Prayers for Springtime, we find an important reading: Mark 3:13-19.  Jesus has cured many people of their physical broken-ness and now the throngs are pressing in upon him in such a way that He told his disciples to have a boat ready for him because of the crowd, so that they would not crush him.  This is where we come into the story.  Jesus ascends a mountain – usually a sign of moving toward God in scripture – and then he calls forth those whom he wanted.  And these came to him.  He appoints them as apostles that they might be with him and he might send them forth to preach and to have authority to drive out demons.  Among these twelve is the Iscariot . . . Judas.  Even God allows betrayers to enter his camp, knowing that they will break his heart.

What an amazing God is this who comes to live among us to suffer as we do; yet this is exactly the good news that we have yearned to hear.  How will our broken hearts be mended?  How will broken oaths be healed and broken friendships fixed?  We step forward, called out of the crowd as apostles, to be sent into the world with God’s authority to drive out demons and to heal.  And how do we obtain this authority?  By participating – with Christ – in his suffering and death upon the cross.  This is what Hosea comes to understand through his own agony as he watches his wife dangle herself before any man who will take her.  This is what we can understand as we suffer at the hands of those we thought we knew . . . those in whom we trusted . . . those with whom we shared our inmost thoughts, desires and fears.

When we look at some of the images in Hosea 6 we see the depth of betrayal.  Verse 4: Your piety is like a morning cloud, like the dew that early passes away.  Verse 9: As brigands ambush a man, so do bands of priests slay on the way to Shechem, committing monstrous crimes. 

And so we pray that broken hearts be healed, that we become messengers of the good news that Christ has come to heal.  We ask for the gift of willingness to enter God’s vineyard, that we allow our suffering to be converted into the authority of an apostle . . . so that we might in turn drive out demons in Christ’s name.

Good and gracious God the Creator, God the Saver, God the Holy Spirit that lives within us:  Keep us close to you in all we suffer that we might be with you as your apostles.  Teach us your way of love that we might go forth as your apostles.  Continue to speak to us of your story that we might preach it as your apostles.  Grant us the patience to rest in your word that it might give us authority as your apostles.  Give us the power to drive out and away all the demons that settle into us without our knowing.  We ask this in Christ’s name.  Amen.

A re-post from May 23, 2012.

Image from: http://www.officialpsds.com/Glass-Shatered-From-A-Broken-Heart-PSD59964.html

Tickle, Phyllis.  THE DIVINE HOURS: PRAYERS FOR SPRINGTIME. New York: Doubleday, 2001. Print.

Rewritten from May 3, 2009 Noontime Reflection. 

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Mark 1: 32-39Demons, Prayer and Godpraying-hands

Thursday, September 10, 2015

They brought to him all who were ill and possessed by demons . . .

The word “demon”, we understand, comes from the diminutive form of the Greek word for “god,” or from the Latin “daimonium” – thus signifying an inferior divinity.  These little teeny gods must certainly be jealous of the one and true God who is all-powerful and everywhere.

He cured many who were sick with various diseases . . .

The small “godette” demons invade us without our knowing and steer us in directions that lead us away from God.  Perhaps I might pray for myself and others that we loosen and free ourselves from demons as often as I pray for our physical well-being.

And rising up long before daybreak, he went out and departed into a deserted place . . .

Many people and causes begin as good and wholesome but turn sour when they fulfill something other than the intent of God.

where he prayed . . .

We might form special petitions to the God of Healing and Hope for the curing of those who focus on something or someone other than God as the reason for their being.

[They] pursued him and on finding him said, “Everyone is looking for you” . . 

We might petition for those who are ill in any way . . . for those who appear to be well but who are not.

So he went into their synagogues, preaching and driving out demons throughout the whole of Galilee . . .

We might petition for those who cannot shake themselves from their personal demons, for those who are looking for Christ, and for those who have ceased to pray.

They brought to him all who were ill and possessed by demons . . .

We live in the realm where demons abound and so we must remember that the only antidotes for demons are . . . God and prayer.

Adapted from a favorite written on December 11, 2010.

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Revelation 8:3-4: The Mystery of Angelsangel-angelinvesting-shutterstock-ubj-304

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Some of us are wary of those who believe in the attendance and work of angels in our lives.

Some of us see angels as compassionate humans, family, friends or strangers who come to us at times of trouble.

Some of us believe in the very real essence and interaction of angels, God’s messengers and presence in our daily living.

And some of us do not believe in angels in any form or manner at all.

Whatever our belief, there is always time and room for exploration. Today we consider the existence of angels . . . and the mystery they present. Whether or not we believe that these special spirits are harbingers of God’s word and action, the question of their existence calls us to think about our own status in the great plan and mystery of God’s creation.

God says: Do not be afraid when you feel the shimmer of my messengers as they tend to your needs. These special beings bring my word to you when you are too distraught to hear it on your own. They intervene for you in unseen ways when you are exhausted or overwhelmed. They deliver hope and grace to you when you are too tired to listen for my words of freedom and deliverance. Yes, you have guardian angels who travel with you always and everywhere. Yes, there are archangels who do my bidding for all of humanity. Yes, my angels can defend, heal, and deliver my word. Some of my angels went their wayward way and insist that they are more important than all of my creation, including me. But I notice that these dark ones come to me amidst the gleaming ranks of the enlightened. I see that what really motivates them is envy and egotism. I also see that they frighten you, but I give you this promise: you need never fear the demons that hope to catch you unaware for I and my messengers are with you. We never leave you alone, never deceive you, never pledge you empty words. I am infinitely patient with you even when you decide that you do not or cannot believe that my angels exist. Despite this disbelief, my angels and I continue to serve and protect you. And this is the mystery of angels. They express my love for you that will never waver and never fade . . . despite the unbelief that enwraps the world. They express my care for you that will always transform and always heal . . . despite the evil that stalks the universe. And at the end of this world that is passing away, you will live in peace with me and my angels. Of this mystery and promise you can be certain.

Explore the way in which the Old and New Testaments tell us about angels at: https://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?quicksearch=angels&version=NABRE&resultspp=25

Enter the word angel into the blog search bar; listen and watch for the angels that deliver God’s word; and celebrate the presence and gift of these very special beings.

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Friday, July 12, 2013

article-new_ehow_images_a07_uf_pj_different-types-angels-bible-800x800[1]Job 1:6


One day, when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, Satan also came among them. 

We know the sons of God as angels who minister to God and act as messengers.  The fallen angels are those who, because of their pride, have turned away from God’s goodness.  The leader of these demons is Satan and we see in this accounting from Job that he slides into God’s presence under cover of his enlightened brothers.  We must always be on the lookout for Satan when things are going well . . . he uses the cover of the presence of the faithful to gain access to God.

God says: I know that Satan prowls the earth looking for ways to slide into your hearts but do not fear.  You have only to keep your eye on me, and your hand and your heart in mine.  All that is required is that you follow me.  My angels deliver messages, they watch over and guard you, they protect and defend you, they worship and sing praises.  I have named each of them as I have named you.  They have free will, just as you do, to turn toward or away from me.  They are my special creatures but even with their great beauty and expertise . . . they are not as precious to me as are you. For you are my own wonderful children. You are made in my image.  I see myself in each of you.  You are mine.

We may have difficulty understanding how God moves in our lives when there are billions of us to tend to.  Understanding how angels act on God’s behalf, when they appear in human lives, and why they are important, we may want to visit: http://www.catholic.org/saints/angels/ or enter the word angel in the blog search bar and explore the world of these special beings.

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