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!