Deep inside every man, we have that “fighting” spirit. There are many things we will fight for throughout our lives. Some men fight in our military, some men fight for sport, some men fight against addictions and others have debilitating diseases and fight for their lives. As men whether you realize it or not, we are always in a fight. One of the biggest fights that you will ever be in is the fight for your soul. The devil views your soul as a prized championship belt that he wants to win and he will try and do whatever it takes to knock you down and keep you there. The question is will you fight?
Satan is not a fictional character that somebody made up to scare people straight. He is real and his purpose is to keep souls from making it to Heaven. He does so in various ways and when it comes to men, he knows your weakness. Whether it be pride, lust, wrath or any of the other seven deadly sins, he knows what your Achilles heel is and he knows how to use temptation in order to help you choose sin. Just like those who see Satan as a fictional character, they also tend to picture him as a “boogie man” or ugly and scary. Far from it. When a man falls victim to the sin of lust, whether it be lust for a beautiful woman, lust for money, lust for power and fame, these things do not come across as ugly or scary but are beautiful and by worldly standards amazing…but that is how the devil will trick you. 1 Peter 5:8 – Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 2 Corinthians 11:14 – And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.
Not having a personal relationship with God, fighting off temptation can be a very hard thing to do. Without God in your life, you may not notice the sins that you are committing. The devil does not need to tempt the worldly man because he already has him in his grasp however, those who have or are building a relationship with God will be attacked and sometimes more frequently. But have faith that you will get through this. 1 Corinthians 10:13 – No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
So how do we fight against the devil and the temptations that are thrown our way? You must put on the whole armor of God. Ephesians 6:10-18 - 10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the equipment of the gospel of peace; 16 besides all these, taking the shield of faith, with which you can quench all the flaming darts of the evil one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 Pray at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints.
Be vigilant and be prepared for battle. There are many tools that can be used during your battles, such as:
- The Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist…the Body and Blood of our Savior Jesus Christ as often as you can.
- You should also frequent the Sacrament of Reconciliation in order to prepare yourself for the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist.
- Attend Mass regularly. Don't just go to Mass here and there, make it a priority in your life to go every Sunday and daily when possible.
- Surround yourself with likeminded men. If you are trying to get closer to God and are wanting to learn more about the Catholic faith then join a group of men who have the same goals in mind. One that I highly recommend that I am active in is The King’s Men.
- Another thing that is a must is personal prayer and spending time with God one on one. Pray, pray, pray and then pray some more. There is no such thing as too much prayer. If you are not praying, make time for it. If you are not spending quality one on one time with God, make time for Him. Even if you start off with 5 minutes a day then do that and work up your way to 10, 15 minutes and so on.
- One of my favorites is praying the Holy Rosary. That is one of my main weapons against evil. There is nothing like holding a weapon in your hand with a fifty round clip. I love meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary while reciting it. It brings me peace and helps calm me down after a long day and it prepares me for battle on the next day.
- Another great form of praying is to do the Examen. This is something that I’m still trying to learn but am really enjoying it so far and it’s a great way to do examine your conscience before bed every evening.
There are so many things that you can do to help you in your fights with temptation throughout the day. Whether it be wearing blessed sacramentals or prayer and fasting, take that initiative to get up and fight and do something to protect yourself and your family. When our battle is done and God has called us home, do we want to stand before Him with a brand new shiny sword or, do we want to pull that sword out of its sheath and show him a sword full of dents and scrapes all bent up and full of blood from the wages of war and prove to Our Lord that we have fought the good fight and to hear him say “Well done good and faithful servant!” The choice is yours.
Take courage and fight on brothers!