what is man?
"See, I am sending an angel before you, to guard you on the way and bring you to the place I have prepared." —Exodus 23:20
The Lord has assigned angels to guard us in all our ways (Ps 91:11). They guard us against all kinds of dangers but especially against the attacks of demons. Why would mighty demons want to destroy little human beings? Because we are created in the image and likeness of God and are loved by God, Satan attacks us in order to express hatred for God and to blaspheme Him. Because the Lord has given us authority and power over Satan (see Mt 10:1), Satan attacks us also in self-defense. Thus, our need for guardian angels implies that we are God-like and attacking with God's power the evil one.
After the first Christian Pentecost, we hear much more in the Bible about angels. The human race which was already loved and empowered by God could now receive the Holy Spirit, "Power from on high" (Lk 24:49; Acts 1:8). Now that we can become new creations in Christ and be clothed with God's power, we are a much greater threat to Satan and his kingdom of darkness. Satan has even more reason to attack us in self-defense. Thus, Satan "is prowling like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Pt 5:8).
The reality of guardian angels reveals to us not only God's greatness but also the glory and power of the human person: created, loved, empowered, redeemed, and transformed by Jesus our Lord. "What is man that God is mindful of him" (see Ps 8:5) and has given us such an amazing life that we would need guardian angels?
Prayer: Father, may I realize the mammoth significance of being loved by You.
Promise: "See that you never despise one of these little ones. I assure you, their angels in heaven constantly behold My heavenly Father's face." —Mt 18:10
Praise: Six-year-old Ellen darted out into a busy street in front of an onrushing car. The driver swerved quickly and her older sister pulled her back, but her parents knew that her guardian angel saved her from certain death.
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, April 4, 1998
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 8, 1998