Wednesday Week 7 of Ordinary Time

Face the Evil One

Three years ago I was assigned in one of the universities of the SVD in the southern part of the country. Expectedly, my superiors asked me to teach, so they assigned me to teach ReEd. One of my students in ReEd, claimed that he is an atheist, someone who does not profess belief in God. One day, I got the chance to talk to him. So I asked him, “how come you would not believe in God?” His replied, “Look around you brother, what you see, children starving, people without shelter and dying here and there because of floods, earthquakes, and bombs; if there is God why would he allow these things to happen? See the news, people are summarily executed for petty things and the rich continuously amassing wealth for themselves while the destitute continue to live in misery, if there is God, why would he permit all these evil to abound?”

There is much truth in what my student observed, the truth is evil abounds and we find them in many forms. In fact we can identify two forms of manifestations of evil. First, there are evil situations and events, like the corruption in the government, murder, misery, and all other forms of suffering. Second, evil in itself, like what a well known film claims, “The Exorcism of Emily Rose.” Evil in itself is not only known in films, many of us I believe have personally encountered it or have heard of individuals possessed by the Devil, that is why we heard of priest doing exorcism.

Evil is a truth and reality we face and encounter. What are we going to do then before and in the face of evil? Can we drive them out? The disciples too have encountered evil, as our Gospel today declares. Are we to be envious of those who can drive out evil spirits? Or do we contribute to evil situations and events by our sinful actions.

Allow me to share with you a story that I have read. One day a young woman was walking home from work when she saw a sight a little girl standing on the street corner, begging. The little girl’s clothes were paper thin and dirty, her her matted and unclean, and her cheeks red from the cold.

The young woman dropped a few coins in the begging bowl, gave the girl a smile and walked on. As she walked she started to feel guilty. How could she go home to her clean and fresh house with its full pantry and well supplied wardrobe while this little girl shivered on the street in the cold and wet nights?

The young woman also began to feel angry, angry with God. She let her feeling be known in a prayer of protest. “God, how can you let this sort of things happen? Why don’t you do something to help this girl?”
And then, to her surprise God answered. He said, “I did do something. I created you.”

Truly our vocation is to fight evil and not to blame God for it. God made us to confront it and challenge it whenever we encounter them, lest we become an instrument of it. Let us fight the evil one and situations of evil in order to let God reign.

And let us remember that we are not alone in this crusade, there are many of us who desires peace, goodness and charity to reign and rule our lives. If others contribute to the crusade of eradicating evil in society let no envy separate us from them, for as Jesus said, “For whoever is not against us is for us.”

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