8.24.15–>”11 Common Features of All Temptations” 10


(10) At some stages, we may find it useful to explore with another person the fantasies which fuel our temptations. Usually these are not entirely bad. Often enough, the images that shout for our attention point to neglected elements in our own depths. To make contact with these images through active imagination or in some other way can help us to get out of the trough of temptation and set us more firmly on paths that lead to progress.

We do not get better by merely talking about our problems. We progress through the exploration of what is underneath our recurring issues with the purpose of exposing these roots to the light of God’s presence which melts them away over time. The more honest and intense this exposure, the quicker the melting away. Some of this depends on the length and grip-strength of the tentacles that have dug into our very self, making it difficult to see what is me and just what is sin. And much of it depends on my level of willingness to surrender, as well as my desire to truly be rid of what has latched on and become a very part of who I now am.

A part. It is not me. It does not define me. It never has to define me, yet it can if I allow it to.

I’ve been in plenty of groups with people who love to talk about their problems. Love to stay in their problems, to justify their vices, to wallow in self-pity, to make excuses. To stay in laziness. This is not getting out of the trough of temptation. This is not the freedom that Jesus offers to all of us. It’s simply fear and lack of desire to do what it takes to live in freedom. The cost has been counted, and in their estimation, the price of freedom is too high.

So they choose to stay.

They choose.

Uprooting is painful and difficult.

Much more so is living as a slave.

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