Our Sunday Visitor Features article on St Francis de Sales

Entitled The Four Stages of Loving by Oblate Father John Crossin, you can read the article here:

https://www.osv.com/OSVNewsweekly/Article/TabId/535/ArtMID/13567/ArticleID/22719/The-four-stages-of-loving.aspx

Chatting about: Overcoming Temptation Through God’s Faithfulness

Sister Susan Marie (Moderator): What do you think of the opening illustration? What point is it trying to prove? Think about its extreme circumstance. You might think that it puts someone in the position of having no choice but to give into temptation, but what is the important point that we gain from the story? The opening illustration can be applied analogously to our everyday life. Perhaps you work in an office or some other scenario with people of the opposite gender. Perhaps there is someone who is a “temptation.: Being “tied down” to our duties and responsibilities put us in situations that we can’t always immediately avoid. How do we live virtuously in these situations?If you are the scrupulous type (or tend that way), has this reflection helped you see that the battlefield in your mind is just that — a battlefield between vice and virtue? We tend to often feel guilty because of the temptations that come our way, but what does this reflection teach us?When Jesus was in the wildernes, the devil tempted Him to turn ss, the devil tempted Him to turn stone into bread to alleviate His extreme hunger. Likewise, in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus felt tempted to not go through with the crucifixion (“Father, let this cup pass me by…”). What does Jesus’ experience of temptation teach us

Guest361 (Guest): Hi Everyone, it’s Judy. You inquired about my poetry. I have been trying to enter a sample, but it will not take my format. I will e-mail it to Mother and ask her to forward it to you.

Jul 16, 7:25 PM

Dawn (Guest): 1st question

Jul 16, 7:26 PM

Dawn (Guest): What do you think of the opening illustration? What point is it trying to prove?

Jul 16, 7:27 PM

VisitationSiste: Hello all!

Jul 16, 7:27 PM

Dawn (Guest): I thought the opening illustration was to much, I do not see the benefit of this description

Jul 16, 7:27 PM

Dawn (Guest): Hi Sister!

Jul 16, 7:27 PM

Lisa C: Hi Mother

Jul 16, 7:28 PM

Lisa C: Sr. Rosemarie?

Jul 16, 7:28 PM

VisitationSiste: Sr is in Ozanam Hall as of Friday

Jul 16, 7:28 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Hi Mother!

Jul 16, 7:28 PM

Dawn (Guest): I meant Mother Susan

Jul 16, 7:29 PM

Lisa C: Will she stay there?

Jul 16, 7:29 PM

Lisa C: Is she ok?

Jul 16, 7:29 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes unless she does not like it but she needs the care and asked to go there

Jul 16, 7:29 PM

Lisa C: Hi Ruth

Jul 16, 7:30 PM

Dawn (Guest): Hi Ruth

Jul 16, 7:30 PM

Lisa C: She is so nice

Jul 16, 7:30 PM

Dawn (Guest): Hi Carol Ann

Jul 16, 7:30 PM

Carol Ann: Hi Everyone

Jul 16, 7:30 PM

Lisa C: Hi Carol Ann

Jul 16, 7:31 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) The point of St. Jerone’s illlustration is that even if one is vehemently tormented by evil thoughts and sights, he is capable of passing them by. The important point is that we never have to give in to temptation but can have the grace to reject it.

Jul 16, 7:31 PM

Lisa C: Mother, thank you for prayers for Elizabeth she is out of the hospital as of today

Jul 16, 7:31 PM

VisitationSiste: Great!

Jul 16, 7:31 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Hi Carol Ann and Ruth!

Jul 16, 7:31 PM

VisitationSiste: Dawn the St Jerome story are you referring to

Jul 16, 7:32 PM

Dawn (Guest): yes

Jul 16, 7:32 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) 7681, is that you Brian?

Jul 16, 7:32 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Hi Judy,Dawn , Ruth, Carol Ann, Lisa, and Sister Susan! God Bless You ! Brian

Jul 16, 7:32 PM

VisitationSiste: Amazing that St Francis de Sa;es included a story like that, no?

Jul 16, 7:32 PM

Lisa C: Hi Brian

Jul 16, 7:33 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Hi Brian!

Jul 16, 7:33 PM

VisitationSiste: It shows that these temptations that are rife today were always so.

Jul 16, 7:33 PM

Dawn (Guest): thank you for affirming that Mother, and I guess I wonder that he did, there must be something important to know

Jul 16, 7:34 PM

Lisa C: Yes, I think the temptations are the same, but the resistance to them is not the same

Jul 16, 7:34 PM

Dawn (Guest): ah, yes. it does illustrate has always been

Jul 16, 7:34 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes because who is thwe St Francis of today trying to point out the correct way

Jul 16, 7:35 PM

VisitationSiste: Plus this type of evil has grown so global and accepted

Jul 16, 7:35 PM

Lisa C: The prevalence of diseases transmitted by giving in to these temptations has increased steadily since the 1960s

Jul 16, 7:36 PM

Ruth (Guest): Hello everyone: Carol Ann, Sister Susan, Lisa, Brian, Judy, Dawn.

Jul 16, 7:36 PM

Carol Ann: Hi Ruth

Jul 16, 7:37 PM

Dawn (Guest): Hi Brian

Jul 16, 7:37 PM

Ruth (Guest): Hello viewer.

Jul 16, 7:37 PM

Lisa C: I think this is what Blessed Mother meant at Fatima re the errors of Russia spreading throughout the world , i.e, the result of atheism

Jul 16, 7:37 PM

Lisa C: i.e.,

Jul 16, 7:38 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) We can live virtuously in a work situation where someone is a temptation for us by directing our thoughts o things of God rather than on the individual who is the source of the temptations. No matter how many times the temptation presents itsefl we can always focus our minds on Jesus, His love, and call to Him repeatedly for His help.

Jul 16, 7:39 PM

VisitationSiste: We know that evil is incremental if not stopped

Jul 16, 7:39 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Our enemy is always looking at our weaknesses and trying to exploit them . Our friends like in our group help us to see our weaknesses and pray for our protection and the guidance of our Lord Jesus in these areas !

Jul 16, 7:40 PM

VisitationSiste: Remember that temptations are not sins. People often get confused about that

Jul 16, 7:40 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Amen Judy !

Jul 16, 7:40 PM

Lisa C: Re a work situation or any situation, I think they are only a temptation if we are not resolved to live the way God has directed us to live. A temptation can be shut down before it goes too far, by just deciding how to live and sticking to it.

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Hi Alice!

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Lisa C: Hi Alice

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Dawn (Guest): Hi Alice

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Carol Ann: Hi Alice

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Alice Lewis-Eckardt: Hi everyone!

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Hi Alice ! Brian

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

VisitationSiste: Hi Alice! AS we grow spiritually our temptations change- we conquer one area so to speak and another weakness pops up

Jul 16, 7:41 PM

Ruth (Guest): A couple of friends who attended Catholic schools indicated to me that it seemed to them, through there schooling, that sexual sin was the only or main kind of sin. SFdS seems to be referring to this kind of sin, too. But there are so many ways of sinning!

Jul 16, 7:42 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes including the sin of omission, not doing something that one should

Jul 16, 7:43 PM

Lisa C: I think that the more holy we become, the more aware we become of sins. When we conquer the big ones we can notice all the small ones.

Jul 16, 7:44 PM

Ruth (Guest): And it seems to me that there is no way of remaining free from the sin of omission – at least as regards praying for and helping others, working to reduce injustices.

Jul 16, 7:44 PM

Dawn (Guest): a gift, a grace to see our sins...big and small

Jul 16, 7:44 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): When the enemy is taking aim at us he is also leaving someone else alone and God is reaching out to them . Many Men and Women of God have suffered greatly in order to lead many Souls to God !!!

Jul 16, 7:44 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) It does, at times, seem that the Church emphasizes sexual sins. I sometimes think that we need to pay more attention to sins against charity, for I believe that they cause more suffering and grief to those who are the victims of lacks of charity.

Jul 16, 7:45 PM

VisitationSiste: They sure do and esp in a convent!

Jul 16, 7:45 PM

VisitationSiste: But anywhere of course

Jul 16, 7:46 PM

VisitationSiste: I think it does help to think of how Jesus dealt with temptations

Jul 16, 7:46 PM

Lisa C: Blessed Mother told the children at Fatima that sexual sins were the most common reason for souls deserving hell

Jul 16, 7:46 PM

VisitationSiste: He is our model in this too

Jul 16, 7:46 PM

VisitationSiste: True Lisa

Jul 16, 7:46 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Always temptations to not Love Others ! But always opportunities to Love Others !

Jul 16, 7:47 PM

Lisa C: Maybe that is why the Church emphasizes them

Jul 16, 7:47 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Brian, I like that idea that when the evil one is tempting someone, he is leaving someone else alone and that God is reaching out to that one. This is a great observation!

Jul 16, 7:47 PM

Carol Ann: It still seems odd to me that there can be so little kindness in a group called to be extra charitable and forgiving? Why is that? Because they are bound together so closely with no outlet!

Jul 16, 7:48 PM

VisitationSiste: Possibly or because the main virtue is supposed to be union of hearts and that’s what is tempted

Jul 16, 7:49 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Carol Ann, to quote the King of Siam “It is a puzzlement!

Jul 16, 7:49 PM

Carol Ann: Well, I did not think of that!

Jul 16, 7:49 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): You can be in a group but alone ! When we are trul one with God and each other all things are possible !

Jul 16, 7:49 PM

VisitationSiste: Jesu had trouble in his group!

Jul 16, 7:50 PM

VisitationSiste: Jesus

Jul 16, 7:50 PM

Ruth (Guest): Brian,m afraid that the Enemy is much more resourceful than you suggest. If he is taking aim at us, he can send his henchmen to harm others. I think that the clever little book by CS Lewis, I believe, The Screwtape Letters, gives a good picture of how the Temptor works.

Jul 16, 7:50 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Truly

Jul 16, 7:52 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): I have seen in my lifetime many instances where friends have suffered greatly and died but they have cleared the path for many to come to Christ !

Jul 16, 7:52 PM

VisitationSiste: Died?

Jul 16, 7:54 PM

VisitationSiste: Can you elaborate on CS Lewis, Ruth

Jul 16, 7:55 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) I think that part of it is that even though the aim of the community is that special unity, there is still weakness among the members and falls are possible. The closeness of a community makes it more possible to see the faults of others and sometimes to criticize them rather than to help them to overcome them. Also, it is said that we often criticize in others the very faults of which we ourselves are guilty.

Jul 16, 7:56 PM

Dawn (Guest): Ive not read Screwtape, but adding to my read list

Jul 16, 7:57 PM

VisitationSiste: Resisting those simple temptations will help build up strength to resist the bigger ones

Jul 16, 7:57 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) I read Screwtape many years ago. It is a tale about a senior devil who is instructing his nephew, Wormwood, in the ways of leading humans astray.

Jul 16, 7:58 PM

Ruth (Guest): The book is fantasy, but full of truth. Screwtape is a chief devil, and he writes letters to his nephew teaching him how to be a good tempter – how to utilize the weaknesses of humans to lead them into sin.

Jul 16, 7:58 PM

Dawn (Guest): Judy, I am reminded of Bishop Barron speaking of us scapegoating, and we should look at our own dysfunctions instead. interesting that he explained it this way....scapegoating. that is what we are doing when we see others faults and point them out

Jul 16, 7:58 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): I had a friend Brian same first name died suddenly. Going to his funeral in two cities . I could see the Souls that Jesus was reaching out to through his early departure . He reminded me of St Steven !

Jul 16, 7:58 PM

Lisa C: If we keep saying that temptations are worse now due to the society we live in, yet Jesus will not let us be tempted beyond what we can resist how do we reconcile these two statements with the increase in sin? Is it that people just do not care about God now?

Jul 16, 7:59 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) I think that many more people reject God in these days than in the past.

Jul 16, 7:59 PM

Lisa C: Why are people rejecting God more now?

Jul 16, 8:00 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes My cousin was just telling me about some in the younger generation who do everything and God is not in the picture

Jul 16, 8:00 PM

VisitationSiste: It is incremental- and cultural

Jul 16, 8:01 PM

Carol Ann: Dawn, do you know what reflection that is in?

Jul 16, 8:01 PM

Ruth (Guest): Sister, there are many premature deaths in the substance abuse community: drug overdoses, diseases as a result of alcohol or drug abuse. SOMETIMES these deaths rattle others in the “community” to get their own acts together, change their behaviors before it is too late.

Jul 16, 8:01 PM

Lisa C: If Jesus will not let us be tempted beyond what we can resist, why are people totally rejecting God? I cannot understand it.

Jul 16, 8:01 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): People cannot see God because they are blind . That is why Jesus wants us to let our Light Shine and to Love our Enemies!

Jul 16, 8:01 PM

Dawn (Guest): I may be able to find it or at least idea of when

Jul 16, 8:02 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): People start to see God and they begin to desire to know Him !!!

Jul 16, 8:02 PM

Dawn (Guest): some actually reject God , I think now there are more who do not know of a God to reject.

Jul 16, 8:02 PM

Alice Lewis-Eckardt: I believe Catholics are not as strong as they once were either, in

Jul 16, 8:03 PM

Carol Ann: Thanks, Dawn

Jul 16, 8:03 PM

Alice Lewis-Eckardt: Part due to society

Jul 16, 8:03 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Lisa, that is a really good question. I think that the increase in materialism , self-centeredness. It becomes easier to succumb to these factors than to fight against them.

Jul 16, 8:04 PM

Ruth (Guest): Welcome, Alice.

Jul 16, 8:04 PM

Dawn (Guest): http://www.lentreflections.com/lent-day-34/

Jul 16, 8:04 PM

Lisa C: Romans 1:20For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood from His workmanship, so that men are without excuse.

Jul 16, 8:04 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) The influence of increasing atheism may also come to bear on this.

Jul 16, 8:05 PM

VisitationSiste: We not be tempted beyond our strength but sometimes we do not KNOW our own strength and in our freedom to choose, reject or choose wrongly

Jul 16, 8:05 PM

Alice Lewis-Eckardt: I am aware of a coldness, distance between people. Also dating is no longer dating for the younger generation

Jul 16, 8:05 PM

Dawn (Guest): ah! Lisa thank you

Jul 16, 8:05 PM

Lisa C: 21For although they knew God, they neither glorified Him as God nor gave thanks to Him, but they became futile in their thinking and darkened in their foolish hearts.

Jul 16, 8:05 PM

Carol Ann: Thank you so much Dawn!

Jul 16, 8:06 PM

Lisa C: I understand about free will, but I cannot fathom making the choice to not honor God.

Jul 16, 8:07 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) That is probably because you have directed your life toward God and those others have continuously sought the self.

Jul 16, 8:07 PM

Lisa C: Faith is a gift

Jul 16, 8:07 PM

VisitationSiste: Some people hate very easily- others don’t It is hard to explain differences of persons and their minds

Jul 16, 8:08 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Have Faith in God ! I write this on my mirror every morning ! No matter how bad it appears in this world or the worse it gets the greater the opportunity for God to bring many many Souls to Heaven if we just Have Faith in God !

Jul 16, 8:09 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) We also need to remember Jesus’ promise that “the gates of hell will not prevail against [the Church].

Jul 16, 8:09 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Trust God ! Trust God ! Trust God !

Jul 16, 8:10 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Yes, trust God, but never give in to presumption.

Jul 16, 8:11 PM

VisitationSiste: Despite horros, Trust God! yes! Read about the Christian heroes of war times

Jul 16, 8:11 PM

Dawn (Guest): there can be grave circumstances in a young persons life where they may not see, or not recognize when God is calling them...if they have nothing to draw on, or faithful people around them . But God is stronger than all this, and I think he never tires of touching a heart, in some way

Jul 16, 8:11 PM

Ruth (Guest): Brian, I admire your energy and focus on sharing the Gospel. It IS good news. And God wants us to be credible witnesses – full of a contagious joy or peace; but we – I, at least – often fail to do so

Jul 16, 8:13 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Regarding guilt about temptations, the reflection teaches us that no matter the gravity of the temptation, as long as we take no pleasure in it and make every effort to fight it, there is no guilt involved.

Jul 16, 8:13 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Your Faith is an inspiration to me Ruth !!! Often I think of you and what you would do in situation ! Happened this morning !

Jul 16, 8:13 PM

Ruth (Guest): Next Sundays Entrance Antiphon: I have God for my help. The Lord sustains my soul. [Psalm 54:6] But do we let that show?

Jul 16, 8:14 PM

Lisa C: The reading today: Reading 2, Romans 8:18-2318 In my estimation, all that we suffer in the present time is nothing in comparison with the glory which is destined to be disclosed for us,19 for the whole creation is waiting with eagerness for the children of God to be revealed.20 It was not for its own purposes that creation had frustration imposed on it, but for the purposes of him who imposed it-21 with the intention that the whole creation itself might be freed from its slavery to corruption and brought

Jul 16, 8:14 PM

Dawn (Guest): yes Judy....let thoughts come and go, just don’t serve them tea!

Jul 16, 8:14 PM

Lisa C: into the same glorious freedom as the children of God.

22 We are well aware that the whole creation, until this time, has been groaning in labour pains.

23 And not only that: we too, who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we are groaning inside ourselves, waiting with eagerness for our bodies to be set free.

Jul 16, 8:14 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Ooo, i like that Dawn!

Jul 16, 8:15 PM

Lisa C: We are first fruits, ones who have faith. Our prayers, sacrifices, and works can save others who do not have the same revelation of God yet.

Jul 16, 8:15 PM

Lisa C: We could not be first fruits if there were not going to be subsequent fruits.

Jul 16, 8:16 PM

Lisa C: Other people will know God later on

Jul 16, 8:16 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) We need to consider the motto of St. John Bosco,Give me souls; take away the rest.

Jul 16, 8:16 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Thanks Dawn ! I will share that with everyone !!Thanks Lisa we are studying Roman Chapt 8!Thursday Night !

Jul 16, 8:16 PM

Lisa C: St. Paul is saying that the whole of creation will be freed from slavery

Jul 16, 8:17 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Amen Judy and Lisa !!!

Jul 16, 8:18 PM

Lisa C: I think that is how we can reconcile how some can get the gift of faith now and it sill be fair. More is expected of those who have more.

Jul 16, 8:18 PM

Ruth (Guest): , Dawn.Just don’t serve them tea! or coffee or beer or linger with them. Good idea about the temptations. The opposite is true of the sinners. One title of Jesus is “Friend of Sinners. We should try naming some of our churches by this title.

Jul 16, 8:19 PM

Carol Ann: Th a t’s an interesting thought Ruth. Less intimidating than only saints

Jul 16, 8:20 PM

VisitationSiste: Great idea Ruth!

Jul 16, 8:20 PM

Dawn (Guest): thank you Lisa!....Romans 8... haha! Ruth that is funny

Jul 16, 8:21 PM

VisitationSiste: We are all sinners- we are all his friends

Jul 16, 8:21 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) The final question about Jesus’ experience of temptation. It teaches us how to handle temptations. He used Scripture to contradict the temptor. We may not verbally “battle” with the Evil One by using Scripture, but continuing to bring Scripture passages, images of Jesus in His ministry, and prayers to mind, we can crowd him out of our minds and thoughts. It will be a struggle, but a worthwhile one.

Jul 16, 8:21 PM

Ruth (Guest): Yes, maybe then the people who say that they fear that the roof will cave in if they set foot in a church will be a little less afraid to enter. The Pope’s notion of the “Field Hospital for Sinners” will become clearer.

Jul 16, 8:23 PM

VisitationSiste: In the Garden Jesus spoke His Fears and then accepted God’s Will

Jul 16, 8:24 PM

Lisa C: Blessed Mother will protect us from temptations. The devil fears her.

Jul 16, 8:24 PM

Dawn (Guest): good ideas Ruth.....to help visiting, esp the first time, not be so intimidating .

Jul 16, 8:24 PM

Dawn (Guest): Alice you are back!

Jul 16, 8:25 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) How grateful we should be for the loving, forgiving Lord Who has given us the Church to minister absolution for our sins. Where would we be without our Church!

Jul 16, 8:25 PM

Lisa C: I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will strike at your head while you strike at his heel. Genesis 3:15

Jul 16, 8:26 PM

Ruth (Guest): And the author of WISDOM says “ . . . and in those who know You, you rebuke temerity.

Jul 16, 8:26 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes Lisa I was just reading this today in a book on Fatima

Jul 16, 8:26 PM

Alice Lewis-Eckardt: Yes I’m back! Didn’t realize my screen had frozen until I didn’t see new messages!

Jul 16, 8:26 PM

Lisa C: Which book, Mother

Jul 16, 8:28 PM

VisitationSiste: I think it is Fr Apostoli’s

Jul 16, 8:28 PM

VisitationSiste: from 2010

Jul 16, 8:28 PM

Dawn (Guest): SO many young Catholics are “on fire” teaching, reaching out to people. Saw picture of a younger priest, sitting on sidewalk with a sign need confession, or to talk...I am just hopeful of how the younger people will hear. God is using so many of them!

Jul 16, 8:28 PM

VisitationSiste: Just started it today

Jul 16, 8:29 PM

Ruth (Guest): Sometimes I think we try too hard to “fit in” to be like others, at least exteriorly – God rebukes us for our temerity – rebukes me, anyway.

Jul 16, 8:29 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes pray for the youth! and help them!

Jul 16, 8:29 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Amen Ruth ! This morning walking out of church I met a lady named Fancy ! She asked for help ! I helped her , prayed with her , and listened to her tell me exactly what God wanted her to do with her life . She said that the street drugs were deadly , she needed drug rehabilitation , she needed to see her mother , she needed to eat good food again , and it just seemed as if God opened her eyes !!! Please keep Fancy in your prayers ! Thank You Ruth !!!

Jul 16, 8:29 PM

Lisa C: What Lucifer lost by pride Mary won by humility. What Eve ruined and lost by disobedience Mary saved by obedience. By obeying the serpent, Eve ruined her children as well as herself and delivered them up to him. Mary, by her perfect fidelity to God, saved her children with herself and consecrated them to his divine majesty. St. Louis Marie de Montfort

Jul 16, 8:30 PM

VisitationSiste: Yes for Fancy and all on substances

Jul 16, 8:30 PM

VisitationSiste: Have a blessed week I will be in DC next Sun nite so probably won’t be on line but the topic will be sent out!

Jul 16, 8:30 PM

VisitationSiste: God bless!

Jul 16, 8:30 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Amen Sister Susan !!!

Jul 16, 8:31 PM

Lisa C: God be praised!

Jul 16, 8:31 PM

Carol Ann: Blessing for your journey

Jul 16, 8:31 PM

Dawn (Guest): thank you Mother! , have a good trip and week.

Jul 16, 8:31 PM

Alice Lewis-Eckardt: God bless! Have a safe trip Sister

Jul 16, 8:32 PM

Guest361 (Guest): (Judy) Have a good trip, Mother! Good night everyone! As I mentioned at the beginning, I will e-mail the poem to Mother and hope that she will forward it to you.

Jul 16, 8:32 PM

Carol Ann: Please do, Judy

Jul 16, 8:32 PM

Dawn (Guest): thank you Judy, goodnight!

Jul 16, 8:33 PM

Carol Ann: Good night!

Jul 16, 8:33 PM

Ruth (Guest): Lisa, that obedience of Mary, and her humility and the coming of Christ, the Redeemer through her – are the reason that the sins of our first parents are sometimes called “Happy Fault.

Jul 16, 8:34 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Thanks for all the prayers for Kairos Men ! Awesome Grouping lady Sunday ! Have a great trip Sister ! Keep Lian in your prayers big interview with big paper in Ogden Utah Thursday ! God Bless You All ! Brian

Jul 16, 8:35 PM

Dawn (Guest): Happy Fault Goodnight Carol Ann, Ruth, Brian....thank you, my prayers for all. see you next week! God bless

Jul 16, 8:35 PM

Guest7681 (Guest): Last Sunday ❤️

Jul 16, 8:39 PM

Ruth (Guest): Brian, I will pray for Fancy. And for all of us. Please pray also for Annie, who I chatted with for an hour or so after Mass today when she saw me in front of the tabernacle and asked what that is. She had not been to Mass, just wandered in afterward. Long ago she was baptised, received first penance and Holy Communion and was even confirmed in the Catholic Church, but has been away from the Church for a long, long time.

Jul 16, 8:40 PM

Dawn (Guest): praying for Annie

Jul 16, 8:41 PM

Ruth (Guest): Good night my Living Jesus Chat community. I appreciate the sharing and support. And especially your prayers.

Jul 16, 8:41 PM

Dawn (Guest): Amen

Jul 16, 9:03 PM

Ruth (Guest): I’m back, but just for a moment. I shared this youtube link with a Jewish friend, and thought that you might enjoy it, too. This is one of the ways that people in the Community of the Beatitudes worship. Baruch Adonai is Hebrew for “Praise the Lord! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlxZesDTaPg&list=RDIlxZesDTaPg&index=1

God’s Faithfulness

Only God can give us the strength to abhor and overcome temptation

 

 

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We continue our series with Part IV, Chapter 4 “Two Striking Illustrations of the Same. from An Introduction to the Devout Life. Here Saint Francis reminds us that we avoid temptation only by the strength of God.

This distinction, which is very important, is well illustrated by the description Saint Jerome gives of a young man bound to a voluptuous bed by the softest silken cords, and subjected to the wiles and lures of a treacherous tempter, with the express object of causing him to fall. Greatly as all his senses and imagination must inevitably have been possessed by so vehement an assault, he proved that his heart was free and his will unconquered, for, having physical control over no member save his tongue, he bit that off and spat it out at his foe, a foe more terrible than the tyrant’s executioners.

Saint Catherine of Sienna has left a somewhat similar record. The Evil One having obtained permission from God to assault that pious virgin with all his strength, so long as he laid no hand upon her, filled her heart with impure suggestions, and surrounded her with every conceivable temptation of sight and sound, which, penetrating into the Saint’s heart, so filled it, that, as she herself has said, nothing remained free save her most acute superior will. This struggle endured long, until at length Our Lord appeared to her, and she exclaimed, “Where wert Thou, O most Dear Lord, when my heart was so overwhelmed with darkness and foulness?” Whereupon He answered, “I was within thy heart, My child.” “How could that be, Lord,” she asked, “when it was so full of evil? Canst Thou abide in a place so foul?” Then our Lord replied, “Tell Me, did these evil thoughts and imaginations give thee pain or pleasure? didst thou take delight, or didst thou grieve over them?” To which Saint Catherine made answer, “They grieved me exceedingly.” Then the Lord said, “Who, thinkest thou, was it that caused thee to be thus grieved, save I Myself, hidden within thy soul? Believe Me, My child, had I not been there, these evil thoughts which swarmed around thy soul, and which thou couldst not banish, would speedily have overpowered it, and entering in, thy free will would have accepted them, and so death had struck that soul; but inasmuch as I was there, I filled thy heart with reluctance and resistance, so that it set itself stedfastly against the temptation, and finding itself unable to contend as vigorously as it desired, it did but experience a yet more vehement abhorrence of sin and of itself. Thus these very troubles became a great merit again to thee, and a great accession of virtue and strength to thy soul.”

Here, you see, were the embers covered over with ashes, while temptation and delectation had entered the heart and surrounded the will, which, aided only by the Saviour, resisted all evil inspirations with great disgust, and a persevering refusal to consent to sin. Verily the soul which loves God is sometimes in sore straits to know whether He abideth in it or no, and whether that Divine Love for which it fights is extinguished or burns yet. But it is the very essence of the perfection of that Heavenly Love to require its lovers to endure and fight for Love’s sake, without knowing even whether they possess the very Love for which and in which they strive.

Questions to Ponder:

  1. What do you think of the opening illustration? What point is it trying to prove? Think about its extreme circumstance. You might think that it puts someone in the position of having no choice but to give into temptation, but what is the important point that we gain from the story?
  2. The opening illustration can be applied analogously to our everyday life. Perhaps you work in an office or some other scenario with people of the opposite gender. Perhaps there is someone who is a “temptation.” Being “tied down” to our duties and responsibilities put us in situations that we can’t always immediately avoid. How do we live virtuously in these situations?
  3. If you are the scrupulous type (or tend that way), has this reflection helped you see that the battlefield in your mind is just that — a battlefield between vice and virtue? We tend to often feel guilty because of the temptations that come our way, but what does this reflection teach us?
  4. When Jesus was in the wildernes, the devil tempted Him to turn stone into bread to alleviate His extreme hunger. Likewise, in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus felt tempted to not go through with the crucifixion (“Father, let this cup pass me by…”). What does Jesus’ experience of temptation teach us?