|Image courtety of Wolgfang Sauber|
So what are these mighty creatures doing acting as "ministering spirits" to us lowly humans (Heb.1:14)? I think it's the same principle at work that Jesus laid down for the Apostles - " whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave — just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Mt.20:26-27). God is Trinity, a Communion of Love, and He desires His children to be the same. He humbled Himself to the point of becoming one of us - a Child Who needed to be nursed and have His diaper changed! (Phil.2:6-10)
There has been speculation that the Incarnation lay at the root of the angel Lucifer's rebellion - how could God become a human being? How could Lucifer ever stoop to serving, seeing to the needs of, men and women, creatures inferior to himself? And that one of them, a lowly peasant girl, would be made Queen of the Angels - too insulting to even entertain! Speculation arises from a passage in the Book of Revelation:
A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads. Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.” And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne ... Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan ... and his angels with him. (Rev.12:1-7)The passage can be interpreted different ways, but you can understand how it has led to speculation over the why of Satan's rebellion. Kind of intriguing to think about spirits, pure intelligences engaging in battle, no? A war of ideas - of reason and willful blindness. Perhaps the fierce interior battles we sometimes face between what we know God wants us to do versus what we want to do, can serve as an analogy.
The awesome truth is that God surrounds us with the care of His angels throughout our time on earth - "older, stronger, wiser brothers" if you will, who look out for us and help direct our steps Home. Each morning on the way to school, my kids and I include our Guardian Angels in the litany of saints we ask to pray for us.
Speaking of my kids, I came across a great prayer online:
I humbly salute you, O you faithful, heavenly friends of my children! I give you heartfelt thanks for all the love and goodness you show them. At some future day I shall, with thanks more worthy than I can now give, repay your care for them, and before the whole heavenly court acknowledge their indebtedness to your guidance and protection. Continue to watch over them. Provide for all their needs of body and soul. Pray, likewise, for me and my whole family, that we may all one day rejoice in your blessed company. Amen.
You've heard the proverb "It takes a village to raise a child"? In this day and age, it takes a heavenly army - thank God each family has one!