Ain’t going away

When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from him for a time (Lk 4:13). Technically, the translation should be that Satan departed from Jesus for a more favorable time. In other words, it was not a one-and-that’s-it temptation for Jesus. Satan was coming back for another try.  And if Satan was coming back to tempt Jesus, there is no reason to think that our life will be free of temptation.

The historian Shelby Foote tells of a soldier who was wounded at the battle of Shiloh during the American Civil War and was ordered to go to the rear. The fighting was fierce and within minutes he returned to his commanding officer. “Captain, give me a gun!” he shouted. “This fight ain’t got any rear!” Same with temptation – it comes at you from all directions. Continue reading

The spirit of penance

The great thing about the internet is that you have access to all kinds of information. Think of all the medical sites available allowing you to research in great depth all your current symptoms – real or perceived. My sisters and many of my cousins are medical professionals. You can imagine how thrilled they are to have a conversation start, “I was reading on WebMD….” Continue reading