Hubby and I went alone to Sunday evening Mass at our parish last night. This is an exceptionally rare occurrence occasioned by the fact that too many children were throwing up on Sunday morning for us to get out. My oldest (who is 18 and has not yet succumbed to the "creeping crud") had gone to Mass earlier, so we were able to leave the sickies home with him as the vomiting had subsided by that evening.
It was so wonderful to sit by my sweetie and listen to the Gospel (as oppossed to stopping the 2 yo from running to the choir to greet siblings) and hold hands during the Homily!
It is amazing what spiritual insights can come when one is not picking up Cheerios while Father explains the readings!
The point he made was that the evil one knows where to tempt us for maximum effect...
I am well aware of that fact as previous posts have attested to...
But what struck me yesterday was the willingness of Eve to listen to and believe the serpent DESPITE her close loving relationship with God.
Think about it, the serpent told her that God LIED! And she believed that ugly reptile INSTEAD of the awesome Creator who gave her and Adam a whole beautiful life and garden and (almost) everything in it! She and Adam walked with and talked with God on a regular basis and she STILL believed the devil over her divine Father!!
What's up with that?!
The power of temptation.
Father reminded us yesterday that temptation itself is NOT a sin.
But temptation is SO powerful that Jesus himself taught us that we NEED to pray "Lead us not into temptation" because it is so very powerful...and we can be very weak...
Few of us are really confused about the "right" things to do, but still we don't do them (St. Paul included)!
Laziness, fear, the intense desire for immediate gratification and pleasure, pride, selfishness...
The list goes on.
But so does the grace that can be poured on us in moments of temptation through our cooperation with the infinite merits earned by Jesus' suffering and death.
Eve did not have that in her defensive arsenal, but we do!
While we strengthen up our "spiritual muscles" this Lent, let's remember that we cannot do it alone (which JPII notes was Adam's sin, leaving Eve to deal with the serpent alone)...
Let us call on Christ without ceasing, and remember that the glitter of temptation is but a momentary and counterfeit dross...
The real gold is found at the foot of the cross.