Sunday, 9 March 2014

Sunday Moments: Between One Man and One Man

It's the First Sunday of Lent. The catecumen were introduced at Mass and we the faithful were asked to do our part for them pray, be good examples and the like. They said yes to the questions they were asked. We said yes to the task we were given.

Jesus said yes when he went into the wilderness. Scripture says "Jesus was led by the Spirit out into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil" but He knew what was not just in the wilderness but also on that hill in Calvary.

Something I heard today that really had me thinking "fasting (and abstaining) sits between "yes" and "no" on the seat of temptation. Think about it you don't eat ice-cream all the time, in fact you can go days maybe a week or more without eating it just naturally but when you decide to give it up for some reason (Lent) you suddenly crave ice-cream like nobodies business. A friend will just call up asking you to just go out for ice-cream. You may go out to dinner with friends and then they may ask if maybe you want something sweet just as you are passing that new frozen yogurt place that you have been wanting to try, you may reason with yourself that that frozen yogurt is not really ice-cream. There you stand (or sit) between yes or no, tempted, knowing what you should do but a little voice whispering what could it hurt. Feel free to substitute with something else that speaks to you.

When Jesus met the tempter He was hungry, He hadn't eaten for 40 days and nights. He was starving, John the Baptist's locust and honey probably looked like a gourmet meal right then. Starting out by trying to speak to Jesus' pride the devil pretends to question the validity of Jesus being the Son of God to trick Him. The devil tries to distort scripture to trick Jesus and then finally he tries to get Jesus to worship him.

In His weakened and tired state you would that Jesus would not have been at His best yet He mad the right choice between yes and no everytime. It is not easy to resist temptation because let's face it you are only really tempted when it is something you really like, really want or really need, something you think you cannot possibly do without. Jesus was able to stay strong because He lived chose to live on the word of God and to worship and serve only God. In His weakened state Jesus knew His need for God.

In my Lenten journey I hope to recognise my weakened state and rely on God, to know I need Him.