Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14 or Revelations 12:7-12abPs 138:1-5John 1:47-51www.usccb.org/bible/readings/092917.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:ccc.usccb.org/cccradio/NABPodcasts/17_09_29.mp3
A reading from the Holy Gospel according to John.
Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him,
“Here is a true child of Israel.
There is no duplicity in him.”
Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?”
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.”
Nathanael answered him,
“Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Do you believe
because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree?
You will see greater things than this.”
And he said to him, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
you will see heaven opened
and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”
Good News Reflection: Working with angels
One day when I was writing my first book (Overcoming the Power of the Occult, published in 1989 — see gnm.org/book-overcomingtheoccult), I wasted a lot of time trying to find a certain scripture passage to help me explain a point. Finally, I thought, “Hey, God has supposedly given me angels for assistance!” So I put the bible down and said out loud, “Okay, ministering angel, I need your help. Show me where the bible says ….”
After describing the quote I needed, I sat back in my chair. Then I noticed that my bible, which I had left flopped open, had a gap between a bunch of the pages; not all pages were lying flat. So I said, “Hmmmm, I wonder,” and I stuck my finger into the gap and flipped the book open to that place. Sure enough! There was the scripture I’d been seeking!
Today’s Feast Day reminds us that angels are not only real, they are also important. God sends them to us to help us on our journey toward eternal life in heaven. Do you realize that even the archangels Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael know who you are and how much God loves you and, because of this, they want to be involved in God’s plans for you? It’s not just their duty; they’re excited about it!
In the Gospel reading today, Jesus wants us to know that angels travel between heaven and earth to work for our benefit, but their ministry depends upon him. Because God loves us, angels deliver his messages to us. Because Jesus cares about our salvation, angels watch for opportunities to nudge us closer to Jesus. Because God wants us to continue the mission of Christ on earth, if we’re doing that, angels help us with it every day, in big ways and in small ways.
You have a guardian angel who was given to you while you were in your mother’s womb. You also have ministering angels — as many as you need for your circumstances, and more if you ask for more.
No concern of yours is too small — or too big — for attracting the interest of angels, but they don’t do everything they could do unless we ask them to. This is the way God designed it; by asking for their help, we consciously place our trust in God’s purposes for our lives and we develop a collaborative attitude for his divine plans.
Angels are not our slaves; they are our partners in the work of God’s kingdom. Reciting the prayer “Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle…” is not enough to assure his intervention. Rather, we have to work hard to win the battle in a collaborative relationship with Saint Michael.
I praise You, Lord, for the wonders You work in my life and for those I have not seen yet, but which You have reserved for me. Amen.
© 2017 by Terry A. Modica