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Self-Control and the Pursuit of Holiness

One might think that being a priest in a confessional would be like watching re-runs. The same sins come up over and over again. However, every priest I know approaches these re-runs with a great joy for they know that there has been a choice made by the penitent, to hopefully strive to turn his life back to God and start fresh.

Think about it – if we are going to confess our sins, why not confess to someone who has apostolic authority to offer absolution. Why? Well, as recorded in exorcism, Satan has said

What you have already confessed, I do not know.

See, they are not just dissolved in our universe, but absolved from our universe. That is, through an authentic confession to a priest who gives absolution in persona Christi, by the power and Authority of God, those sins are blotted out of the memory of fallen Angels, while we retain the ability to remember them but for the purposes of drawing glory to God and all that is Holy. That’s what every great conversion testimony has at it’s core! 🙂

The point being though, if fallen angels have their memory of a particular committed sin blotted out, then they can no longer use that particular committed sin against us.

What is a Committed Sin?
When we place ourselves above God and or use His creation counter to its purpose as structurally designed that is a committed sin. This comes in all forms (especially with regards to sexuality). Who tempts us to sin? Those who hate God and who hate us (because we still have the chance to turn back to Him and glorify Him). Who? Fallen Angels (Demons). Note that just as how we could be decieved by a fallen human entity, we could be decieved by a fallen angelic entity. And if you don’t believe that angels exist at all, then try praying the Rosary every day. It is so hard to do because there are legions of fallen angels who do not want you to do it.

Father Gabriel Amorth, Chief Exorcist of the Vatican writes:

One day a colleague of mine heard the devil say during an exorcism: “Every Hail Mary is like a blow on my head. If Christians knew how powerful the Rosary was, it would be my end.” The secret that makes this prayer so effective is that the Rosary is both prayer and meditation. It is addressed to the Father, to the Blessed Virgin, and to the Holy Trinity, and is a meditation centered on Christ.

Self-Control
If you are successful, observe the changes in your life after 30 days, and measure them against these promises. The thing is, to pray the Rosary for 30 days takes self-control, but we have been raised in a world that replaces self-control with the pursuit of self-gratification which is counter to every virtue including chastity.

If you recognize that you lack self-control in certain matters, with the help of God, and the growth in self-discipline, you can overcome that by His grace. It is He who works in you that makes it possible. It is not you alone. However, if you lack discipline and self-control to manage yourself at the little things, chances are you will be less successful at exercising discipline and self-control at the big things.

Discipline and self-control is something that we must practice daily, otherwise we won’t get good at it.

Test Yourself
Below is a list of ways you can practice self-control in the littlest of ways, which will lead to great of transformation over time – from being reactive to proactive in your life. Measure your daily activities against the items of this list, and take an honest inventory of where you are at.

1. When your alarm goes off, don’t hit the snooze button.
2. Open your day with a short prayer.
3. Get out of bed after prayer (or intimate time with your spouse).
4. Do x-many push-ups or sit-ups per morning, add one each day until you hit a target.
5. Set your bed before you leave your room.

6. Get dressed before you leave your room/bathroom.
7. Do not spend time on social media before work.
8. Control your portions at breakfast at home.
9. Have a well-balanced breakfast at home.
10. Shovel the driveway before you leave for work (winter).

11. Brush and floss your teeth.
12. Shower or wash daily.
13. Before bed, do remaining dishes.
14. Ensure unused lights are shut off.
15. No Internet after 8pm, and no Smartphone/Laptop in your room.

16. Have a set supper time.
17. Shave appropriately.
18. Plan your meals.
19. Pray before meals.
20. Pray the Rosary daily (25 minutes).

In Closing…
God’s Mercy is greater than our sins, but angels are greater than us. However, even the lowest in Heaven is greater than the highest fallen angel. For that reason, pray without ceasing, and watch your life transform.

 

 

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