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Sunday, February 22, 2015

How much time do you invest for prayer and Scripture reading? - Daily Reflections February 22,2015

HOW’S YOUR DEFENSE?
On the night of March 3, 2014, NBA player LeBron James of the Miami Heat scored a 61-point career-high against the Charlotte Bobcats. But not everyone was impressed. NBA Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins went on a Twitter rant, downplaying LeBron’s career night. He tweeted, “No denying he put on a shooting display. He was hot... But where is the defense? No close outs on defense, doubles were late, rotations were slow. It was too easy to score. At 54 years old, I could drop 40 on that defense.”
       While I have my own opinion on Wilkins’ rant and analysis, in a nutshell, Wilkins was saying this: LeBron scored 61 not because he was unstoppable but because the defense was weak.
       On this First Sunday of Lent, we read Mark’s account of the temptation of Jesus on the mountain. This Gospel account teaches us some things on the reality of temptation. One thing with sin is that the temptation is not always strong but that, at times, our defenses are simply weak, sometimes even non-existent. And when our defenses are weak, “the tempter” will always have a career scoring night against us.
       How do we fortify our defenses? First, through the defensive power of prayer. When the devil tempted Jesus, He was in a 40-day retreat in the desert. Prayer surrounds us with God’s shield and protection. Second, through the defensive shield of God’s Word. After each and every temptation, Jesus rebuked the devils’ wiles by countering with a quote from Scriptures.
         How do we resist the devil? How do we make him flee from us? It is by fortifying our inner fortress with the shield of God’s Word. I end with an old sage advice: “Unless we have within us that which is above us (i.e., God and His Word), we will easily yield and fall to everything that is around us.” I say it again, when our defenses are weak, “the tempter” will always have a career scoring night over us. Fr. Joel Jason
REFLECTION QUESTION: How much time do you invest for prayer and Scripture reading?
Surround me always, O Lord, with the shield of Your Word. Amen.

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