Mass of the Holy Angels Student Preacher Reflection

Reese Macicek ’24


Choices. Choices are these unavoidable things that we are faced with in our everyday lives. These choices can lead us to amazing experiences but also to some not so amazing experiences. Choices can be simple: how should I wear my hair today, what should I eat for breakfast, do I buy a cookie at lunch? They can also be pretty serious: what college do I go to, which group of people do I choose to surround myself with, am I in a safe situation? With every choice is an outcome. We are in control of our choices and can choose those that lead us towards or away from goodness.

Today we celebrate the Holy Angels: St. Michael, St. Gabriel, and St. Raphael. These three named archangels all have a special connection to the Lord: St. Michael meaning who is like God, St. Gabriel meaning strength of God, and St. Raphael meaning medicine of God. These archangels all chose a close relationship with God. They are purely spiritual beings, and are always in the presence of God, but that doesn’t mean they were forced into their choice. They had the option to choose God or to turn away. While the Holy Angels made their choice to remain with the Lord, Lucifer made his choice to turn from God and all that is good.

We too have a choice. But what is holding us back from choosing God? Is it fear of judgment from our peers, lack of trust in God, or simple uncertainty? The beautiful thing is that God calls us all to make our choice without pressure. He allows us to choose in our own time. Recently my dad explained an analogy to me. He started with the simple question: how many times do you stop at a red light? I looked at him in confusion. “Dad where are you going with this, you’ve already lost me.” He asked the question again and I said “always.” He then proceeded to say, “so generally people stop at red lights 99% of the time. Why though? Is it because the consequences are visible, you could cause an accident, or because it’s the right thing to do? Regardless of the reasoning, you stop. Every day we have the choice to be kind. But are we kind 99% of the time?”

This made me think. For many of us that answer is no. The consequences of being unkind aren’t as visible as those of running a red light. This may be why we stop at lights more than we choose kindness. But the choice of being unkind is choosing against God. We make up excuses for why we can’t be kind. Though we are imperfect beings, we should not allow that to be a reason to not be kind. We have to plan to choose kindness, in every situation, just as we plan to stop at every red light when driving.

So how do we make this choice of kindness and goodness and live it out? Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, on your own intelligence do not rely; in all your ways be mindful of him, and he will make your paths straight.” When we choose God, we accept the plan he has for us and choose to enter into a freely given and loving relationship. There was a time when my mom and sister were in a fight. In that moment, I had a choice. Did I want to let it upset me? Or did I want to give this moment to God, trusting in Him, and letting Him enter this situation? I decided to choose God. I got in bed and began to pray. I took the time to pray for the relationship and conflict between my mom and sister. As soon as I finished this prayer for them, I heard the door open. God had heard my prayer and the conflict was resolved. You see, when we choose God, we start to notice him in our lives. When you are actively seeking goodness and kindness, you can start to see God in different aspects of your life, such as nature or, in this case, even conflict resolution. If I had not turned to God, the simple opening of the door may not have stood out to me as a reminder of his presence or even happened at all. This simple choice to turn to God was an invitation to form a relationship with Him, and this invitation is for you, too.

So, the next time you are at a red light I encourage you to refocus and think about how you can make kindness and saying yes to God, a goal for the rest of your day. Call upon the Holy Angels to help you desire goodness and eternal life. And when we choose this goodness for the right reasons, we start to see such beauty in our faith. I see this in my baby siblings. They always ask to pray at night. Unlike us, they are not worried about the future, and they don’t just turn to prayer because they need something. They are not anxious about their alphabet test tomorrow or which friend they will play with on the playground. They just genuinely enjoy saying prayers at night and talking to Jesus. They see that genuine friendship Jesus has to offer and seek it at the ages of 3 and 4. We sometimes choose God, but only because we want something material from him. It is definitely important to turn to God in times of need, but what about turning to Him when things are good? Are we remembering to thank him in the highs of our life, instead of seeking him only in our lowest points? When we find this balance, we truly will discover the true friendship God has to offer. If we are seeking truth and genuine friendship, where we give and receive, that is seeking God. I encourage everyone to find ways to seek God. Show gratitude for what you have already received and let him in. Such a simple choice can lead to a genuine friendship and, ultimately, eternal life and happiness.