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Lent it a time to focus on the choices we make in our lives

Here is an excerpt from Fr. Peter Kavanaugh which is applicable to the purpose of our Lenten struggle...

There are two kingdoms in this world: the Kingdom of the Devil, and the Kingdom of God. They do not mingle. There are no forty shades of grey between them. There is Black and there is White. This is the first message in this passage. We have to see it.

What is the kingdom of the devil? “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph. 6:12). Even if we believe this, we do not take it very seriously. We have grown up in a secular world. We compartmentalize our daily life (i.e. TV shows, social media, entertainment, and career decisions) from our spiritual life. In reality, all of that distinction is hog wash. Everything we do has a spiritual dimension. Every moment of the day is open to spiritual forces, good and bad. The messages from our politicians, news stations, and school boards are all influenced by spiritual forces. Nothing is neutral.

Christ’s words take on a new meaning when we apply them to the 21st century. “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters” (Lk. 11:23). Any individual, corporation, or government not working for Christ is working against him. Not only that, is is “scattering” — skorpizei in Greek — literally, disintegrating and corroding the soul. This corrosion, in the heart of worldliness, is even implied in the devil’s name. He is the Beelzebul— in Hebrew: Ba’al Zevuv — the Lord of the Flies.

Fr. Maximos Constas comments: “[Today] we have built a culture of organized distractions, aiding and abetting the mind in its fallen condition…Lingering unregenerately in a realm of illusions; mesmerized by the images flitting about on our computer screens, we become “dull, predatory flies buzzing on the chamber window,” desperate to consume all the futility of the world.”

The devil is the distractions.

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