Father Patrick Butler, LC
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Luke 11: 15-26
Jesus had driven out a demon, some of the
crowd said, "By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of
demons, he drives out demons." Others, to test him,
asked him for a sign from heaven. But he
knew their thoughts and said to them, "Every kingdom divided
against itself will be laid waste and house will
fall against house. And if Satan is divided against
himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that
it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul, by
whom do your own people drive them out? Therefore they
will be your judges. But if it is by
the finger of God that I drive out demons, then
the Kingdom of God has come upon you. When
a strong man fully armed guards his palace, his
possessions are safe. But when one stronger than he attacks
and overcomes him, he takes away the armor on
which he relied and distributes the spoils. Whoever is
not with me is against me, and whoever does not
gather with me scatters. When an unclean spirit goes
out of someone, it roams through arid regions searching
for rest but, finding none, it says, ´I shall return
to my home from which I came.´ But upon
returning, it finds it swept clean and put in
order. Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits
more wicked than itself who move in and dwell
there, and the last condition of that person is worse
than the first."
Introductory Prayer: Lord, you are omnipotent,
all-powerful. For that reason alone, I ought to ally
myself to you. I believe that you can do
all things. I am confident that you will act in
my life. I love you because even though you
are the all-powerful God, you are humble, having made
yourself one like me, so that I can approach you
without being intimidated, with trust.
Petition: Lord Jesus, your
kingdom come in my soul!
1. The Sign from Heaven:
When Jesus casts out a demon from a soul,
some of the bystanders then ask him to perform a
sign from heaven. Jesus is the sign from heaven,
the living presence of God with us. His casting
out a demon already testifies that he can do what
no one else can do. It proves that he
is God. However, I want to fix my eyes on
him as the object of my love, not on
the spectacular things that he does. It is important
to look at the Giver, not the gift he gives.
The Kingdom of God: There is combat going on,
and the human soul is the battleground. In this case
the man is freed of demonic possession, and one
kingdom has been dispossessed of its conquest. Another Kingdom
is on the move! Light is replacing darkness. Springtime melts
away the winter. This brings joy and warmth to
3. The Gentle Guest: When the soul has
been freed from the effects of evil, it can be
likened to a tidy house. Jesus chose to clean
the house, the interior dwelling place, of the possessed man.
He will not, by his choice alone, take up
the vacant place in that soul. He very much
desires to be there, but he knocks and wants to
be invited in freely by the homeowner. Once at
home in my heart, Jesus is the strong man whom
no one can overcome.
Conversation with Christ: Lord
Jesus Christ, I am not content just with being
liberated from sin, although that is already a great
gift. I know that you are knocking at the door
of my heart. I ask you to come in
and make my soul your dwelling place. I have been
made to be a dwelling place of the Blessed
Trinity, and I desire that fullness of life.
I will be attentive to the fact that I
am a dwelling of God and look to do what
is worthy of that dignity. Specifically, I will be
attentive to the thoughts that pass through my mind and
the words that cross my lips today.