Many times we read the Gospel stories about demoniacs like the one in today’s Gospel (Luke 8.26-39) and we think there is nothing relevant for us today. Most of us don’t even believe demons are real, let alone know of anyone who may be possessed by them. Of course, they are real, but the truth is, even if we do not suffer from demons we can still benefit from this story from the Holy Scriptures.
We all have demons that control us. They may not be the sort that are described in the Gospel, but the demons that control our life have effects that are just as crippling. Our demons are the passions, temptations, and sins that surround us. Here are a few to consider: depression, anxiety, laziness, various addictions, and various emotional and physical illnesses. These all tend to overpower us and can even take control of our lives, sometimes even leaving us lifeless.
But there is hope for even the most violent and crippling demon. As Christ approached the demoniac described in the Gospel of Luke, He found a man that had so many demons he no longer lived in the city among his family and friends, but in the wilderness among the graves. He had become a complete outcast from society. Sometimes we can feel alone and without family and friends. Sometimes we can even feel totally abandoned and want to call out to God for help.
There is always help. There is always God. There is always a way to return home. We only have to approach God and He can help. There is no demon that God cannot heal or remove from our soul if we ask. Maybe that is the most important lesson for us today from today’s Gospel. The demons had no power in the face of God. Even the pigs were protected by God’s protection. When we allow God to cast out the demons that control us, we will experience a new life free of the burdens of sin.