Just my Thoughts · Religion

Temptations in the Desert and Our Lives

I have been following, and jumping in with both feet, as Ronna Detrick stays in the desert this Lenten season.  You can imagine my surprise when the homily at Mass yesterday dealt with the temptations that were put to Christ while he was in the desert.  I don’t want temptations.  I want to be in the desert to get to know me better with the temptations.  Unfortunately, as Father Clarence pointed out, these temptations are ones we face all the time.  What amazed me, and pardon my analogy but this is the way  my brain works, was that Christ could easily bring the temptations right back around to the point He wanted to make.  It reminded me of a political candidate that never gets off message.  Regardless of the question asked, the candidate brings things back to his message.

So back to temptations.  As I was hoping to remember them until I managed to get to paper and pen to write some notes, I came up with the three D’s.  The first temptation was doubt.  Who doesn’t have doubt in their lives?  We doubt we are doing things the right way – parenting, relationships, work, life.  Doubt is always there, seeping into our minds to cause us to question our very souls.  We need to realize that God is there for us regardless of what we are doing.  We make a mistake parenting.  God will help us through the mistake.  We have a relationship that is not good for either person involved.  God will show us how to do what is best for both people.

The second D is distractions.  Distractions are temptations to which most can relate.  How many people do not have distractions in their lives?  These distractions could be as simple as the television and as complex as children.  Anyway you look at it, you need to have some time without distractions, to be able to achieve what is desired of you.  In the case of Christ in the desert, Satan tried to show Him the wonderful things off to the left or off to the right, ways to get out of the desert.

The third D is demands.  These temptations tend to be bigger for us.  We demand things, wants.  We demand that things appear instantaneously.  We demand different ways to do things.  We demand what we want, even if it is not in our best interest.  We feel we deserve so we demand.  We need to let go of the demands.  Look around!  I don’t know about you but I have what I need.  You notice the change in slant here – want versus need.  I may not live the life some do but I am happy with what I have – food, a roof over my head, happy and healthy children, some materialistic items.  I don’t need other things, though I may want them.  I should be content with what I have.  By being content and not demanding other things, I have found – yes, I have been at this position before in life – that other things come.  Sometimes, the wants come.  Sometimes, things that I did not even consider come.  God provides!

11 thoughts on “Temptations in the Desert and Our Lives

    1. You just like making me think, eh Ben? I will get three A’s for you by tomorrow but probably not online til Thurs as I am in Ithaca tomorrow, weather permitting.

  1. I’ve always loved how Jesus’ life in the New Testament teaches us so much about ourselves. The time in the desert is one of my favorite examples. Thanks for sharing your perspective!

    1. Charlotte – The basis was from our priest’s homily Sunday. Some of the thoughts are mine but a lot are paraphrased from what I heard.

  2. Wow, Nicki, if I had had a priest like yours I might be a slightly less lapsed Catholic! I love the universality of the idea of the three D’s: as you said, who among us doesn’t face these sort of temptations – acknowledged or not – in her own life?

    I’m also enjoying Ronna’s Lenten series! She is such a powerful thinker.

    1. Kristen – I was ready to shop for a new church. Catholic churches, where I live, are like Baptist churches in the South. Then, a little over a year and a half ago, we got this new priest. I haven’t thought about leaving since then.

  3. So true about the D’s! You nailed the ones I struggle with all the time. Today I had a minor revelation. It’s kind of a long story but the moral was this: I don’t need to worry about the expectations of the world; if I stick close to God, He will help me out. And he did! And he will continue to do so as I work through the D’s. Thanks for a great post!

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