What might that mean for us? It means our purpose is not to conquer with words but to convert our hearts. That will prepare others to convert their hearts when they see what our transformed hearts lead us to do. That is in sync with Mark’s purpose. It is the essence of Christianity and of Judaism.
When I reflect on temptations which derail me I notice they share something: they lack a sense of surprise. They seem they were supposed to be there. They appear as if my life were supposed to take such turns; as if they were supposed to be part of my God-desired self. Yet they are delusions! Chasing our temptations instead of standing against them deludes us. Chasing our compulsions, inadequacies, our fears and self-doubts delude us and constrain us.
- Pause in the presence of our triune God.
- Ask St. James to present you to Jesus.
- Speak with Jesus: praise him for creating you and redeeming you today. As people, actions and blessings surface on your heart and mind, thank Jesus for them and ask yourself, “How did I respond?”
- Ask Jesus for the grace to act more in sync with him and his good news as you look forward to tomorrow.
- Close saying slowly the Lord’s Prayer. His words lead us are not limited to away from temptation and evil. His words lead us express our conviction that God in Jesus blazes the trail for us to follow.