Devotions from Haase’s book, Living the Lord’s Prayer
As I wrote yesterday when we pray, Lead us not into temptation, we acknowledge that we all experience temptation that comes in different degrees but is always enticing and seductive.
John Cassian, describes 8 thoughts Satan confronts us with in our spiritual lives. They point toward our obsession with self- concern, self- image, self-preservation and self-gratification
5.Dejection and Diligence When we turn our angry thoughts inwards it leads to sadness and thoughts of dejection. Diligence can be an antidote as we do a particular task with full attention on it and not focusing our ourselves and the gloomy clouds over us.
6.Acedia and perseverance. Acedia, is laziness, sloth,or boredom because we don’t see immediate desired results in our spiritual progress. But perseverance is the persistent opening to God’s grace and the spirit of endurance that never ceases to respond.
7.Vain glory and humility. Vain glory promotes a belief in self-sufficiency and self-satisfaction of a bloated self-image. We have little need of God. But the virtue of humility dissolves vainglory and keeps our feet on the ground as we recognize God as the giver of everything we have in life.
8. Pride and charity. Pride coaxes us into thinking that we are better than others, that we are on a pedestal above everyone else. Charity takes the focus off our self and on God and service to others, where it belongs.
We need mindfulness and vigilance to resist these temptations. We must let go of thoughts that come down the stream of our consciousness and scrutinize the motivations behind feelings and desires. We have the choice of whether or not to feed these desires and focus our attention elsewhere. Let us become aware of these 8 tempting thoughts and resist them as we confront the power of evil which stands in direct opposition to God.