The powers that we are fighting against throughout our lives, powers that we encounter in our own souls and powers that we face in the outside world, are not powers of flesh and blood – so this week’s Gospel tells us (Letter to the Ephesians, Chapter 6). The real powers that we fight are, just like their beneficial counterparts, spirit beings. And just like the powers that help and guide us, these powers, that we call “adversary”, are deeply involved in the course of human history and evolution.
If we at times are unsure how to tell good forces from the bad, the helper and guide from the adversary, we can look toward Michael and the gifts that he brings us. He is what the adversary is not.
The Michaelmas epistle tells us: “…how for moments he changes the sternness against the power of the enemy, and his hand formed to beckon he shows man: Follow me.”Michael is not a spirit to exert pressure, to push and shove humanity where he wants us to go. He is respecting our freedom and our choice, willing to work with us through our weaknesses and failings. And in doing that he gives us the greatest gift of all, the armor of God that he carries and that we may carry, too:
The willingness and preparedness to lead our feet wherever we can fulfill our destiny
The truth that ‘girds our loins’, that holds us together and wells up from our deepest being.
The shield in our hands that is the faith in the good forces that aid us.
The breastplate of our feeling of love, righteousness and justice for all living things.
And the helmet of our thinking that does not turn toward the dark places but toward the certainty of a healing that will change the earth.
Thus we are armed to meet any adversary. And thus we carry in our hands not the sword as a physical weapon but the Word of God as a deed – as a force for the good.
Michaelmas is not happening only at this time of year. We can carry the gifts that Michael gives us
always. We can put on the armour of God wherever we go. It will protect us.
This contemplation by Rev. Contreras is inspired by Eph. 6