Here we are, quickly approaching the half way mark for Lent. I’ve given up trying to make myself feel bad for not writing as much I had originally planned to write during this season of Lent. Things happening in my life have me turning more inwards and some struggles I am just not ready to share in a public forum.
During the past few weeks, I’ve had the opportunity for personal growth through presentations and discussions at our parish. Just as I felt like I was hearing the message that giving up might not be the path to walk early in this Lenten season, I am feeling a bit bombarded by information with a focus upon demonic attacks and sin.
Yes, you read that right….demonic attacks. I know that’s a topic that many Christians seem to shy away from as they’d rather focus all on how loving God is and how grateful we should be for His Grace and gift of salvation. I’m not knocking those things as I am incredibly grateful for a loving God who expressed his love through the ultimate gift of Christ dying on the Cross for our sins. However, I also know that attacks to our very well being through temptations are a real thing. We are all vulnerable to these attacks and I have seen many who are active in ministry suffer a greater level of spiritual attack than those who seem oblivious to it all.
I recently was blessed to attend a nearly 2 hour talk for our MOMS group by a Dominican brother on utilizing the Sacred Scriptures for your own transformation into saints through cooperating with divine grace, particularly in your moral life, which in the Dominican, includes the spiritual life. Whew…that’s one long descriptive title. Thankfully, Brother Thomas Aquinas was gracious to share his notes (12 pages!) for that talk as it was packed with so much information. Specifically, he talked about how the active study of Sacred Scripture can help us become mystics and exorcists.
Something that struck me as he walked through the 7 Deadly Sins is that in the past few years I have suffered attacks for all of them. And, sadly, some have flown past my radar a little on the late side. Thankfully, we have a God who does love us and offers us forgiveness when we ask for it. But, his talk has me realizing that where I thought I was prepared for spiritual warfare based on previous experience, when the tactics were dramatically changed and coupled with attacks on multiple fronts, I failed miserably.
It was during youth group this past Sunday where the high school students began a multi week exploration of the Theology of the Body that I found more to reflect upon when it comes to spiritual warfare. And, finally, at Mass this morning, Father reflected on how we have to battle both external and internal demons. (Luke 11: 14 – 23 was the Gospel reading for Mass.) Those internal demons work through our inclination towards selfishness, which I know I have had to struggle with in the past.
So, I detect for myself a theme of preparation for spiritual warfare in my own life. For quite a while, I have been experiencing physical ailments and bouts of depression which I am convinced are tied to this. I was foolish to think that stepping back from active ministry in our parish would be enough to lessen those attacks.
If I can find the words, I’ll also be sharing my own reflections upon some of the different educational opportunities I’ve had with regard to it. I hope some will join me on the journey. But, if it is too heavy a topic, I’ll understand the crickets and invite you to keep visiting some of my more fun posts like Creating a Spring Cake with Sweetworks Candies.
This year, I am joining Trish @ A House Upon the Rock in co-hosting the 40 Days of Seeking Him meme. The linky will be up each week so you can add in posts daily, weekly, or whenever you are able. The posts can be about anything related to Lent and preparing for Easter ~ crafts, food, devotions, music or reflections are all welcomed.
I hope that my readers will join us on the journey through Lent as we seek to grow closer to Christ. Christian bloggers are welcome to join us in the weekly link up with posts that they are writing to showcase activities or reflections taken during this Lenten journey. Visit 3rd Full Week of Lent (2015): Family Altar to check out posts by me or other bloggers or add your own to the link up.
How do you prepare for Spiritual Warfare?