May the Lord give you grace and peace in the Holy Spirit during this Lent. It is on 26th February 2023. The first week of Lent.
Are you tempted?
The first week of Lent highlights our daily spiritual struggle in coming closer to God amidst the alluring attractions, and distractions of the devil.
There is no one is spared in temptation. The demon tempts with the approval or without the nod of God. The battle with the devil is not yet ended for every living person.
His Holiness Pope Francis exhorts all of us that “Christian life is a life with temptation” and, therefore, “we must be prepared for temptation”, because “we will all be tempted.” Not doing the mission of Christ is the primary temptation of our time. “My son(daughter), if you come forward to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for temptation, set your heart right and be steadfast.” (Sirach 2:1-13). The temptation is in the creation that is in the garden of Eden and in the re-creation of Jesus’ ministry.
Without listening to the Word of God, we cannot resist the temptation that comes alone in our lives. As we attempt to listen to the Word, we need to be careful about our gossiping tendencies.
Jesus goes to the desert where He is tempted by the devil. Devil is seen so vividly in the first book of the Scripture and in the life of Adam and Eve who lost the gift of grace. Jesus defeated all the attempt of the devil in destroying the purpose of
Our life’s purpose is to know God in the Father, love God in the Son, and serve God in the Holy Spirit.
We are repeatedly seduced, intoxicated, and indoctrinated by the devil through so many means.
Early pages of the Bible present the story of creation from two different traditions. Who are we and what is the connection and relationship with the Creator God is narrated by the authors. The breath of God is in every human being, and it is being strangulated by the sinful hands of the devil. The Tempter tempts the first parents with the better rather the best option to replace God in knowing, loving and serving God. The temptations are the moments to choose or obey God or the devil. Most of the times, we humans choose the latter.
Having been applauded by God at the banks of the river Jordan, Jesus was led to the mountainous desert. Jesus never betrayed God and God’s trust in Him. Jesus silenced the devil not merely rhetorically but with the conviction of being the Son of God and the responsibility to redeem God’s people. If we know the purpose and meaning of our existence, we would think twice to betray God in our temptations.
Grace and peace come through Jesus Christ. “Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” (2 Peter 1:2).
Being tempted is human but to lose the grip of God during the temptation is spiritual madness. 40 days of Lent is not going to be that easy to stand against the devil and choose God without prayer, penance and fasting and by receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
The devil would leave us when we have stood our ground in dealing with the temptations we all need to face. It is by being faithful to the Word of God, having faith in the Lord and serving the faithful we can always overcome the temptations that come to us.
Hence we need to be aware of the lies of Satan and their seductive deeds. Deception and deceiving are the trademarks of the devil. The more we dialogue with the devil, we begin to follow and fall for the prompting of the devil slowly but surely. We all know about the temptations of the devil; we are facing day in and day out. Many temptations of vanity, arrogance, greed, avarice, and gossiping all come from Satan.
So let us hide from the Lord but come closer to the Lord in prayer and penance. May God help us to have a fruitful Lent. May God bless you.