Today, I recall Bishop Patrick Zurek marking my forehead with chrism saying, “Michael the Archangel, be sealed with the Holy Spirit.”
Ever since, my heavenly patron has been teaching me lessons of warfare.
When we think of Saint Michael the Archangel, we usually picture a buff-and-tough soldier with wings, engaging a red-faced, fork-tailed creature in combat. (And kickin’ butt.) Now, I have never seen angels engaged in battle. But we might be forgetting how Saint Michael defeats Satan.
How does he do it?
Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels battled against the dragon. The dragon and its angels fought back,
but they did not prevail and there was no longer any place for them in heaven.
The huge dragon, the ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, who deceived the whole world, was thrown down to earth, and its angels were thrown down with it. (Revelation 12:7-9)
Scripture tells us that whatever Michael does, we on earth must now do, because Satan and its angels are in our midst.
How do we do it?
To be ‘like Mike,’ we have to embody his name. “Michael” derives from the Hebrew question מי כאל “Who is like God?” Tradition tells us that this was (and is) Michael’s battle cry against Lucifer, the proud angel who declared he would not serve God. (Of course, a prideful angel would find disgrace in serving so humble a God who becomes Man and is ‘born of a woman, under the law.’)
By refusing obedience, Lucifer thought of himself as greater than God. Michael’s battle cry revealed that humility is the key to defeating Satan. Who is like God? No one!
Our Lady knows this well, and exorcists tell us that Satan and his demons tremble at the name of Mary. Why? Because she defeated Lucifer the very same way: her humility allowed God to bring His Son into the world, to save it.
So, let’s ask Saint Michael, all the angels, and the Queen of Angels today to pray for an increase in our humility. Amen.