Possible things

My confessor recommended to me that I meditate on the passion so that I can come to a greater understanding of God’s love.  His instructions were to simply read a passage from the Gospel, and quietly listen for what God has to say.  Sounds simple enough.

Yesterday I was reading the 14th chapter of Mark, when Jesus is in Gethsemani.  My eyes fell upon these words, “And he saith: Abba, Father, if all things are possible to thee: remove this chalice from me; but not what I will, but what thou wilt.”

I stopped.  Something didn’t seem right.

So I read them again, this time more carefully.

And he saith: Abba, Father, all things are possible to thee: remove this chalice from me; but not what I will, but what thou wilt.

What happened?  The first time, my brain added two letters before the word all: “if.”  I added a condition to what Jesus said.  Certainly our Lord knows that all things are possible.  I’m the one who introduced doubt, my doubt.

It made me wonder: how much of my prayer life has been conditional?  Have I been praying, “If you can do this God…” rather than “If you will do this God…” or simply, “Thy will be done”?

Jesus probably prayed more than these words.  He was there for an hour.  But the evangelist records only this one bit.  Jesus affirms the power of God.  He makes His request.  Then He surrenders to His Father.

Here we have the first three steps: we admit that we are powerless over sex addiction and that only God can restore us to sanity, we come before God with our needs, humbly and sorrowfully; and we surrender our lives to Him.

Remember the passion of our Lord when working the steps.  Remember them year round, not just during Lent.  Find an hour every day to enter the garden and pray with Him.

 

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Lust

“I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” Jesus, Matthew 5:28

Sexaholics Anonymous seeks to remove lust from the mind of the addict. Other groups say this is an unrealistic goal.

I think that both views are correct, to an extent.

Removal of lust, that is, inordinate sexual desire, sexual fantasy outside of marriage, fantasy for fantasy’s sake, or adultery of the mind; is most certainly a good thing. Lust serves to objectify others, including our spouse.  For the addict, it can easily become a form of escapism, preferred over intimacy with another.

Yet, insofar as sexual desire is natural, so is lust, but natural sexual desire isn’t really lust, is it?

Thoughts are difficult, if not impossible at times, to control. Sometimes we can will thoughts out of our minds, but other times they won’t leave no matter how many times we click our heels together, just ask any PTSD sufferer.

Removal of lust must be a goal, but not our primary focus. If we work on recovery in other ways, the lust will diminish in time.

Here are 5 things you can start doing today :

  1. Go to a meeting. It can be face-to-face, by phone, or online. Interact with the people who understand you best.
  2. Get some exercise. Go for a walk, go to your gym, or do jumping jacks. Do something.
  3. Call up an old friend. Relationships are essential to recovery.
  4. Call your mother (or some other close family member). Our relationship with family is the second most important one we have. Don’t call to reopen old wounds. Rather, call someone you’re on good terms with. Step nine, not now, is the time for those often painful amends.
  5. Spend five minutes (or more) in prayer. This is your most important relationship. When did you last speak to your Father in Heaven? He’s waiting to hear from you, even if you don’t know what to say. Just be with Him.