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He who must not be named

I am a geek. Sometimes this is the only excuse I have for half of the stuff that comes out of my mouth on a typical day. 8-9 years ago, I was sitting in honors English. It was 7 in the morning. Our class consisted of about 4 people, so we didn't have a class during the school day. Instead, we had to get up and get to school in the tuckus-crack of dawn to go to a special once a week Honors English section in the morning. It wasn't too bad. One morning, the teacher asked us to explain the title of "Lord of the Flies." My hand shot up because I knew the answer. I legitimately knew the origin of this term since I had spent more of my childhood and adolescence really annoying my family by watching History Channel specials (before the channel was taken over my nonsense in an effort to increase their viewership). Though I had not watched a history channel special on William Golding, I had watched more than my share of religion-based and bible-based History Channel specials.

Here is an idea of what ensued:

Teacher- (with a "There is no way even you know this" look on her face) Yes Barbara?
Barbara- (in true Hermione fashion) It comes from the Hebrew Ba‘al Zəbûb, which is pretty much another term for beelzebub aka satan. Ba‘al Zəbûb pretty much literally translates into "Lord of the Flies." 

***Lesson plan is ruined. Teacher shreds lesson plan for the day in front of class.*** 
Other guy in class- (scoffs) There is no way William Golding knew that. That can't be it.  
Teacher- (torn between pride and disappointment) Well.....he did study at Oxford and was a Nobel laureate...
If you're not familiar with this book, I highly suggest reading it as it demonstrates just how terrible we can become if we let "original sin" aspect of human nature get the best of us. Ever since that whole ill-fated "let's defy God and go apple-picking" venture,  people have had the tendency to just give into temptation. Sometimes, we do it without even thinking about it becasue it's just so incredibly easy to sin.

Anyone who has every been a hormonal teenager knows how easy it is to give into lust.
Anyone who has ever been the highly praised all-star athlete at school knows how easy it is to give into pride.
Anyone who has ever been a New Jersey driver knows how easy it is to give into anger.
Anyone who has ever used up all their sick days for no reason knows how easy it is to give into sloth.
Anyone who has ever had a crush on your best friend's girl knows how easy it is to give into envy.
Anyone who has ever pocketed someone's lost cash knows how easy it is to give into greed.
Anyone who has ever taken advantage of Subway's $5 footlong knows how easy it is to give into gluttony.

As my parent's often used to say, even the saints sinned 7 times a day. If people like Saint Peter sinned...and even denied Christ a few times....what hope do we have? The problem with sin is that it is extremely easy and the gratification is instant. I don't know about you guys, but sinning is so easy for me. I barely get onto the turnpike and I'm already cursing off the driver in front of me. I'm still full from lunch, and I still go for that cupcake. I see a strapping, bare-chested Fabio-esque male on a romance novel cover at Borders, and I pick it up. I'm not perfect.

God knows we're not perfect, so He sends His son to redeem us. He even throws in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and gives us all sorts of gifts to help us get over sin. No, not the Confession app (though I hear it's useful). I'm talking about wisdom, piety, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, understanding, and fear of the Lord...the gifts of the Holy Spirit. There's also the 7 virtues, the words of the saints, a Church that caters to our spiritual needs. Oh! I almost forgot about the gift that is often overlooked....a conscience that helps us discern the difference between right and wrong.

Now, that other guy knows we're not perfect either. Instead of helping us when we trip, this guy does his best to ensure our fall (sometimes even tripping us in the first place). You know who I'm talking about (no, not Voldemort). Unlike God, this guy wants us to fall. He wants us to give into temptation just as he did before the world was created...when he decided to oppose God and try his hand at becoming an equal to God. To make a long story short, this guy opposed God. He fell from grace, was thrown out of heaven, and has been trying to make himself feel better by ruining as much souls as possible ever since. Chances are, he and his minions will probably continue to lead us astray until the end...when (***spoiler alert***) God wins. 


Quis Ut Deus?!? 
Though we are tempted every day by sin, we must remember our purpose in this world. We aren't here to give into temptation. We aren't here to achieve instant gratification. We aren't here to waste our lives pursuing things that will ultimately fade (like fame, fortune, and all those other things we're tempted with). We aren't here to complain, hurt, torment, hate, or purposely offend.

Our stay here is temporary and we are given the choice to use our time however we see fit. With that said, we can make the best of our time by trying to be the best people we can be (even if we fall sometimes). We are here to live a life that will secure our salvation. We are here to help our neighbors seek salvation. We are here to make ourselves worthy of one day seeing God. The beautiful part about our creation is that God gave us everything we need to one day reach heaven. Therefore, do not get discouraged when you find yourself too weak to avoid temptation. Do not allow yourself to be weakened by doubt or fear. You are so much greater than these and you have SO MANY PEOPLE rooting for you. Every saint that has walked on this Earth is rooting for you. Our Blessed Mother is rooting for you along with all the angels in heaven. Even the Holy Trinity is rooting for you. How can you possibly lose hope with such an epic group of fans?

Pax Vobiscum

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