Fight the Craving
Have you ever had a serious craving for a certain kind of food, or maybe sweets in general? I know for me, last night it was definitely peanut butter. Something in your mind and body just puts the thought into your head: I need this, I want this, you should have this. Food cravings happen to everyone, and the way to go about them is by having a good and balanced diet, moderation. These are easy enough to handle. But what about the other temptations we have to deal with?
Have you ever heard of the description of an angel is on one shoulder and the devil is on the other? The devil tempting you to go one way and pursue temptations, while the angel on the other side, your conscience, telling you to avoid the temptation and move on. These temptations can be minor, such as gluttony (eating too much), to much larger temptations, such as thievery and lust. Here is where we get to the Catholic notion of Original Sin. What is original sin? This is the first sin committed at the beginning, leading to a lifetime of sin built into humanity.
In today's first reading, we read at the end:"And out of the ground the LORD God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food, the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying,'You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die'"(Genesis 2:9-17). We know what happens next, Eve is tempted by Satan and eats the fruit, then persuades Adam as well. This is the first defiance of God, resulting in a change within humanity- the start of temptation and evil.
Every time we defy God, and give in to our temptations, our greed and desires, we take a step away from God. The way to return is through repentance, confessing our sins, and trying each and every day to focus on the goods which God has given us. The next time you have cravings, try to direct your thoughts towards God instead. You'll fell so much more grace and fulfilled.
Today's prayer comes from 'Our Catholic Prayers', a prayer for resisting temptation:
Behold me, O my God, at Your feet! I do not deserve mercy, but O my Redeemer, the blood with You have shed for me encourages me and obliges me to hope for it. How often I have offended You, repented, and yet have I again fallen into the same sin. O my God, I wish to amend, and in order to be faithful to You, I will place all my confidence in You. I will, whenever I am tempted, instantly have recourse to You. Until now, I have trusted in my own promises and resolutions and have neglected to recommend myself to You in my temptations. This has been the cause of my repeated failures. From this day forward, be You, O Lord, my strength, and this shall I be able to do all things, for “I can do all things in Him who strengthens me.” Amen.