I LOVE this image of St. Joseph. He looks like he’s just out for a nice stroll in the woods, maybe getting some firewood and collecting flowers. And while he’s out walking and collecting, oh, yeah, he slays the devil.
St. Joseph doesn’t show any sign of fear, repulsion, or anger at the beast below him. To him, it’s just a day’s work. He leans on a staff that pushes into the beast’s mouth all the while carrying flowers! How beautiful.
I think maybe when our minds and hearts are solely fixed on God, when we are abandoned to His will so utterly, we don’t need to do the battle ourselves. The enemy is placed under our feet. I’m reminded of the scripture that tells us to put on the full armor of God. The breastplate or righteousness, helmet of salvation…That’s a great image, but it also conjures up, in my mind at least, the notion that we have to fight. Though we are protected with God’s armor, we have to go out swinging. This image of St. Joseph seems to indicate that God will work in us a miraculous thing. We arm ourselves, but God will direct the axe. He will direct the staff where it matters most. Just like he did with David, he directs the stones we hurl at the enemy, especially if we hurl them in love.
So sleep peacefully, Heaven’s warriors. Go about your daily task of battle with detachment. Do the will of God, and he will give you the victory effortlessly. That doesn’t mean we won’t suffer. It just means we count it all gain.