Squirrels eat less on sunny days. In the winter storms it seemed I needed to replenish the rails once a day. Tonight it seems there is little seed gone from yesterday. Still, it is calm, and comparably warm. My window is open, though I bear cold better than most. A dog barks in the distance. The scent of the forest wafts through, spurred by the rain and snow now dry.
Temptations are never to overcome us. Of course they do, but we are not slaves to these anymore. Always there are ways away, if we are willing ourselves to be away.
Today was a day of peace, and yet… there were avenues in which I saw myself slide. So, I worked on assorted tasks, keeping me busy. I went for a long, welcome run through the hills, realizing I hadn’t run in too long. It felt wonderful. I chatted with a friend, a welcome conversation. And I kept on the straight and narrow.
Each vice has a response which is most effective, each of the disciplines are used in a palette of spirituality, letting us color in response to the rhythms of our life and our particular faults.
We think the assaults will continue, our descents will never end, until we stop and respond, consciously acting against our inner selves, forcing upon our minds the power of a stronger spirit. Eventually, we do not fight those battles any longer, for we always win. And if we don’t? Then we forget what is behind and strain for what is ahead. We give up and we blame our sinful sense, forgetting that no temptation is to great for us to fight. We let ourselves be weak, and consider it our lot. No, spiritual exercise is as brutal as physical. Running up a steep incline for many miles takes the same will as fighting sin for a day. Each moment asks us to quite and cave in, each step forward takes us closer to our goal. That is the hope and promise. The peace is that if we stumble, there will be one there to pick us up and keep us going. Ours is not a lonely battle, but it is a battle. Everyday, every moment, until eternity is fulfilled.