Thursday, March 14, 2013

temptations



Do not grieve over the temptations you suffer. When the Lord intends to bestow a particular virtue on us, He often permits us first to be tempted by the opposite vice. Therefore, look upon every temptation as an invitation to grow in a particular virtue and a promise by God that you will be successful, if only you stand fast.
~St. Philip Neri  (1515-1595)
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The beginning of all temptation lies in a wavering mind and little trust in God, for as a rudderless ship is driven hither and yon by waves, so a careless and irresolute man is tempted in many ways. Fire tempers iron and temptation steels the just. Often we do not know what we can stand, but temptation shows us what we are. 
Above all, we must be especially alert against the beginnings of temptation, for the enemy is more easily conquered if he is refused admittance to the mind and is met beyond the threshold when he knocks.
~St. Francis De Sales (1567-1622)
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I woke up the other day hearing a song from my dreams--one that I’ve never heard before: 
“come to the Father who loves you and won’t ever leave you.” 
What a beautiful reminder, especially during this season of Lent and it’s proding to shed away my illusions. Like the illusion that *I* can take care of my own personality defects, what a great temptation!

As my good friend Susan Stabile noted in a recent CREO EN DIOS blog post, 
"for those of us attempting to lead spiritual lives, temptation often comes in pleasing disguises. How much easier it would be to avoid temptation if the tempter appeared as a devil with pitchfork trying to persuade us to do some obviously evil act!"
Check out Susan’s entire post, including an image of Titian’s painting of “The Temptation of Christ.You will be surprised.

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~1 Corinthians 10: 12