Lent Day 6 – The Allure of Power

by Bishop Robert Barron


Having failed at his first attempt to tempt Jesus in a direct and relatively crude way, the devil plays a subtler game: “The devil took him higher and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a single instant” (Matthew 4:8).

This is the more refined temptation of power. Power is one of the greatest motivating factors in all of human history. Alexander the Great, Caesar, Marcus Aurelius, Charlemagne, the Medicis, Charles V, Henry VIII, Louis XIV, and Napoleon—these are all people who have been seduced by the siren song of power.

We notice something very disquieting in the account of this temptation: the devil admits that all the kingdoms of the world have been given to him. He owns and controls them. That is quite a sweeping indictment of the institutions of political power. Isn’t it true that it seems extremely difficult for someone to attain high positions of power and not become corrupt?

It might be useful to recall here the two great names for the devil in the Bible: ho Satanas, which means “the adversary”, and ho diabolos, which means “the liar” or “the deceiver.” Worldly power is based upon accusation, division, and lies. It’s the way that earthly rulers have always done their business. A tremendous temptation for Jesus was to use his Messianic authority to gain worldly power, to become a king. But if he had given in to this, he would not have remained a conduit of the divine grace. He would be as remembered today as, perhaps, one of the governors of Syria or satraps of Babylon.

No, Jesus wanted to be the one through whom the divine love surged into creation, and so he said to Satan, “Scripture has it, ‘You shall do homage to the Lord your God; him alone shall you adore.’”

   

Want more daily reflections? Be sure to sign up:

 


 
  • Anton D

    Today politicians bow down to peoples whims and fancies to get elected to power.
    Courts also tend to go the same way.

    • Anniloh

      Today’s politicians and many judges are motivated by gifts and offers of power from extremely wealthy corporate lobbyists who are directly influencing laws and interpretation of laws that are moving us further and further away from Christian values. Even politicians who claim to be Christian are compromising those values to maintain the power of office. While building a new world within the shell of the old, we should still be aware of the battle being fought for the heart and soul of our nation.

      • Elizabeth

        We just have to look very close to see there are honest and God fearing people who govern judges. I pray Justice Antonin Scalia is now in heaven having a heart to heart talk with him. Jesus will probably say: Thank you for following my Way.

      • Emmalee

        Which means looking all sides of each issue. Again, if someone is pro-life, it is from the moment of conception to the time of natural death. Not pro-birth and then kicked to the curb.

  • concerned citizen

    Though many of us may not literally sell our soul to the devil, still some of us may be willing to do something evil if it means fulfilling our dreams of wealth, power and fame in exchange. Sometimes it may mean doing something evil in order to keep our friends, keep our reputation, or keep our job.

    • ber

      I think you have sumed it up quite well not much to add exept to ask the lord for a repenting heart defeat the devil by handing everything over to the lord well put thank you

    • Marsha

      Concerned Citizen – You summed it up well: usually it is not the big choices that take up down, but the day to day, moment by moment ones. Pray to be faithful in the small details of life, for humility, kindness, compassion, and, above all, wisdom. Bless the turmoil and be open to your part in turning things around by your witness as the day and opportunities presents themselves.

  • concerned citizen

    In line with today’s reflection, we should always remember the words of Jesus: What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?” Very powerful words to remember. All the profits we can earn in this world are just temporary and all will be left behind when we die. The only thing that matters is the salvation of our soul.

    • Gary

      All of the temptations were an attempt to stop Jesus from going to the cross. He was sent here for the prime purpose of salvation by dying on the cross and resurrecting from the dead thus conquering death for us and defeating Satan. Unfortunately, Satan or Lucifer (deceiver) uses the same lies causing us to think that this world has much to offer us, and so we grasp at the things of the world. Jesus says “Love not the things of the world and My kingdom is not of this world.” Jesus said I am at enmity with the world.” There is a continuing battle going on between the physical man and the Spiritual man. St Paul put it best in Romans when he said “OH WHAT A RETCHED MAN I AM. I DO THE THINGS I SHOULD NOT DO, AND I DO NOT DO THE THINGS THAT I SHOULD DO. Lent is a really good time to draw closer to Jesus, let your thoughts and action be pleasing to the Father, and let the Holy Spirit help you grow in Holiness. The Lord Jesus in me loves you.

      • concerned citizen

        Thanks for sharing your thoughts Gary. St. Alphonsus Liguori cited the following delusions of the devil: 1) “I am still young and will not yet die, so I can go ahead and enjoy the sinful pleasures. I will just reform my life when I grow old.” – But how do we know we will have a long life? We can die this very night. 2)”I can confess my sin after I have committed them. So, let us be merry and forget about God in the meantime.” – But how do we know that – for tonight, we may die and we can no longer confess our sin. 3) “God is merciful and no matter what sin I commit, God will forgive me anyway” – Our God is a God of Mercy but He is also a God of Justice. And when you die in a state of sin, there is no longer forgiveness. The sin of presumptuousness is also a sin against the Holy Spirit. 4) “I am strong, I can overcome this temptation.” – No one walks on burning coal barefoot without getting his feet burned. Do not underestimate the devil.

        • Gary

          Thanks. you cannot have the world and Jesus too. Jesus says “you are either for me or against me” and ” Today is the day of salvation”. Look at what he told the rich man. “Tonight your life will be required of you.” You are right. It is too late to repent after death takes you. So many people think they can play games with the Lord and are willing to gamble with their salvation. It saddens my heart when I talk to people about their Christian condition, and they believe that they can wait on repentance.

  • jesspinosa

    What struck me about Sunday’s reading is how Satan offers Jesus all the power and riches. What arrogance to offer what he does not own, to the One who created all. He reminds me of politicians and criminals who commit atrocious acts, deceiving themselves into thinking that they are above the law (one particular politician who is currently in the news comes to mind). I cannot imagine anyone offering me power and riches but if and when it occurs, I pray that I would have Jesus’ faith in His Father to see me through.

    • Emmalee

      You are right on target Jess. The preparation is as important as what comes next.

  • sleepy

    it pays to remeber Christ at all times, in all circumstances, in spite of ever-increasing opposition… the more opposition, remeber Christ always…

    do the one term of office – and offer your every move, every decision, every thought to God…

  • Rhonda

    “Scripture has it, You shall do homage to the Lord your God; him alone shall you adore.” I’m wondering if anyone could help me. Does anyone know where (or if it does say anything about) in the ccc, one can find going to a non-denominational service is not recommend or is wrong. Long story….our college son is being forced to attend.

    • concerned citizen

      Try the first commandment.

    • concerned citizen

      Rhonda, It is not categorically stated in the CCC.2015 but as far as I know it is okay to attend a non-denominational service but not to participate in it. Like if you are attending a Protestant Wedding Ceremony, it is okay to attend but not to participate. I will try to find an authority in it.

      • Rhonda

        Concerned Citizen,
        Thank you…. I am on the same page as you. Thanks for your time in what you did for me this morning. How to know what to do in situations at times is hard. One reading were are told Jesus hung out with the sinners, (and yes I am a sinner in whom is very thankful for him)….but than reading the words in this psalm 1:1-2 Blessed the man who follows not the counsel of the wicked, nor walks in the way of sinners, nor sits in the company of the insolent, but delights in the law of the LORD and meditates on his law day and night…..so which one are we supposed to do?

        I also thought to to be called “a Christian” one had to believe in the doctrine/dogmas of Our Blessed Mother Mary. Many don’t believe it, so why are they being called Christians?

        In reading a letter St. Ignacio’s of Antioch (taught by the disciple of John) wrote to the Philadelphians; I am going to put just a part of it in here (emphasis added when ALL CAPITALIZE):

        As sons of the light of truth, FLEE DIVISIONS and EVIL DOCTRINES ; where your shepherd is, follow him as his flock.

        For all who belong to God and Jesus Christ are with the bishops; all who repent and return to the unity of the Church will also belong to God, that they may live according to Jesus Christ. DO NOT BE DECEIVED, my brothers. IF ANYONE FOLLOWS A SCHISMATIC, HE WILL NOT OBTAIN THE INHERITANCE of God’s kingdom; if anyone lives by an alien teaching, he does not assent to the passion of the Lord.

        BE CAREFUL, THEREFORE, TO TAKE PART ONLY IN THE ONE EUCHARIST; for there is ONLY ONE FLESH of our Lord Jesus Christ and ONE CUP to unite us with his blood, ONE ALTAR and ONE bishop with the presbyters and deacons, who are his fellow servants. Then, whatever you do, you will do according to God.

        Feeling like a very lost sheep.

        • concerned citizen

          Rhonda, In order for Catholics to be in full communion with the Church, they are obligated to believe all its dogmas, and that includes the dogma of the Mother of God, Assumption and Immaculate Conception. What they are not obligated to believe are in the Apparitions such as the Apparition of Our Lady of Fatima or the Apparition of Our Lady of Lourdes. In my case I fully believe in them.

          • Rhonda

            Concerned citizen, I believe in them also…. to be called a Catholic, yes one has to believe in the dogmas of the Mother of God….many Protestants don’t…this is where my question is…. why are they called Christians?

          • concerned citizen

            Though they are not in full communion with the Catholic Church, they still believe in Christ and the Bible. That is why they are still called Christians. They are our separate brothers and sisters in Christ.

          • Emmalee

            Then there is also the issue of the Real Presence.

          • rtclovesmac

            God will speak to each of us in a manner that reaches our understanding.

            We should focus on what unites us, not which divides us.

            If the Jews are God’s chosen people what about we Catholic Christians?

    • Elizabeth

      When the church was still defensive about the reformation, it was then we were not allowed to be involved or even set foot into a non-denominational church.When you say forced, by whom? How grounded is your son in his faith, that is the key? At his college do they have a Newman Group. If so, then he can invite those who are involving him in the non-denominational service to attend the Newman Group.

      I attend non-denominational services for my friends. And they have come to RC services as well. The important thing is to keep communications open with your son. Inquire what they do there. If he has practiced his faith he will see why and what he believes.

      It was through non-denominational friends I stayed with the Catholic church over 40 years ago. They showed me how to pray when I had “Lost my identity.” One non-denominational friend I worked with would read the Bible during our lunch time. One day I asked her why she was joy-filled. She had the wisdom of God to tell me, this was not the time to let me know. She has discernment and truly walks with her God. She in turn, came on a Catholic weekend retreat with me. And after all these years, that is one special weekend for her.
      Also two years ago I was on retreat, there were non-denominational woman present there as well.
      This is what Pope Francis recognizes, we need to communicate with other Christians. Especially at this point in time.

      • Rhonda

        Thanks Elizabeth.

  • William John Meegan

    Once a child enters the world and loses it sheen of spirituality via it parents and society’s educational system into its cultural mores the child is kicked to curb so to speak to defend himself against his own educated ego, which no longer has that spiritual sheen it was sent into the world with. It is during this educational period that the child’s ego selects, like walking through a smorgasbord, those things that enamor it psyche. These selections are what determines the child’s destiny in Satan’s (ego) hierarchical world.

    Thus the child with a raging ego (Satan) is continuously gorging on the pleasures of the world and their is no difference between a raging glutenous ego and an uneducated child, which is loosing it spiritual sheen. They are both driven by archetypal instincts, which are the animal envoys that control and maintain the character and personality of the ego.

    Once the psyche obtains Christ consciousness it has the ability to defend itself against the raging ego; for the reason that, it no longer wants the abyss of NOTHING for that is all that the world has to offer: i.e. NOTHING. Spiritual CONTENTMENT is the true substance in God’s creation. Be content with what you have: Garden of Eden. In fact once one obtains Christ consciousness the EGO becomes spiritual and does not gorge upon the pleasures of the world. Yes, the psyche lives in the world but is not part of the world.

    The problem is that the raging ego that has no spiritual sheen has no idea of what the three temptations of Christ are all about. Only those with Christ consciousness can envisage their meaning. it is indeed a pity that each person has to be fully accepted into the embrace of God before he or she can understand his WORD. It is in fact very much like two different human species living on two different planets. One lives out in the wilderness of the desert: i.e. Society’s Civilization (continuously unsatisfied with ungodliness) as oppose to those living in the GARDEN OF EDEN (Content with Life: i.e. God).

    • Sara

      Very well said…

      • Elizabeth

        We just have to remember to “Follow in Christ’s footsteps.”

  • William John Meegan

    Bishop Robert Barron cannot tell you that he preaches to the CHOIR or those that cannot hear him on a spiritual level. People have been going to Holy Mass for more than fifty years and never heard a word of what the sermon was all about nor do they know what the ritual of the Holy Mass is all about.

    The Catholic Church is for those that want to know God and the Holy Mass and the sermon and other religious lectures hopefully will inspire members of the laity into a deeper research into the WORD OF GOD.

    My own suggestion is that those that really want to know God – that they read the Bible from cover to cover: i.e. Genesis to Revelations at least twice before choosing a section to really research to its fullest. I myself did this and then began reading the first chapter of Genesis over and over and over again for about a month before I began to see a pattern that inspired the rest of my life.

    The history and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church may appear to be horrendous; but, if the raging ego needs an excuse to depart from the Church like Martin Luther did there is plenty of pseudo mythological history to accommodate those excuses.

    It is very difficult to believe in history; for the reason that, historians are bias for many different reasons. Even in recent times historians, especially news medias, politicians, police and our Judicial System has omitted to tell the truth about recent history. For example the Sexual Scandal of the Catholic Church is paraded throughout the world in the hopes of denigrating the Roman Catholic Church; however, what is being hidden and omitted from the general public from knowing is that our public educational system have teachers sexually abusing children one hundred (100%) percent times than that of the Catholic Church http://churchinhistory.org/pages/910-sex-abuse-&the-catholic-church/n-a-forgotten-study.htm. If the truth ever went viral there would be riots in the street and there would be an American Bastille Day when the parents of America realizes their children are being raped daily in the public schools. Very very few of these teachers are prosecuted. THIS ALONE SHOULD TEACH YOU HOW MUCH YOU CAN TRUST HISTORY AND WHOEVER.

    I began to look at ANCIENT HISTORY as a spiritual conspiracy of mythology and years later I would find I was correct in doing so. I personally see the first 1560-years of Christian history as a continuation of the Sacred Scriptures via literature, art and monuments; however, all of life is a mythology.

    It matters not that contradictions are found in the bible or history; for the reason that, it is all was written down symbolically to record the WORD OF GOD for posterity. All life is symbolic of the WORD OF GOD. The WORD OF GOD is not for the profane and the infidel nor do we give it to the swine.

  • plc53

    “…ho diabolos, which means “the liar” or “the deceiver.” Worldly power is based upon accusation, division, and lies. It’s the way that earthly rulers have always done their business.”

    Yes, and it’s the way the civil courts and then the tribunals do their business, too, when promoting first divorce, and then the quick, easy annulments to be had now in the Church. Accuse, divide, lie.

    Not God’s way of love, but the world’s, the flesh, and the devil’s way of accusing, dividing, and lying, to get what you want. An enlightening, yet difficult and disturbing, book to read concerning these facts is, “What God Has Joined Together: The Annulment Crisis in American Catholicism”, by Robert H. Vasoli.

    It’s a crisis that is bringing grave harm to many souls, particularly to so very many children.

  • Don Carriker

    L….Lucifer U…….uses ……. S …….secular T………temptations. LUST. . . . Lucifer, Beelzebub, Satan, Whatever you wish to call him has temporary dominion over all the world. He is allowed to use any and everything in it to capture me and you. Power and Sex are his two most-used forms of bait and power is the greatest aphrodisiac known to Man. So they go hand in hand. So when we accept or gain power of any kind be extremely wary. Power does corrupt. I do not write this from an ivory tower about something in which I have no experience. Power itself must be subdued by a Higher Power.

  • Chi_Town_Hustler

    A strong reflection in this a “Presidential Election” year with the passing of a great Supreme Court Justice and who could replace him. Some running for this high Office I feel are just seeking “POWER”! #Pray for #Values & #Truth

    • Nancy Janzen

      The poor have become pawns. And a good thing the preferential option for the poor has taken on some truly racist baggage. Minority poor good. White poor something to be ridiculed and used against conservatives. Even though many white poor are poor because of liberal policies. Will we next make fun of the unemployed created by Ford and Carrier moving to Mexico. I know the stress that causes their families. It happened to my mother four times in four years as I was preparing to choose a college. Couldn’t even know what state we would be living in.

      • Elizabeth

        We have to continue to pray and believe, “And this too shall pass.”

      • rtclovesmac

        I feel your frustration Nancy, but those lives in the US that will change because of these moves, what about those that will benefit?

        What alternatives do we have to succeed as opposed to those in Mexico?

        And if these moves reduce the flow of immigrants to the US then what other good can be realized?

        Be faithful and trust in the Lord and it will workout for everyone.

    • Emmalee

      To be a bit of the other side – even those who appear to be of high morals and beliefs can still be tempted.

  • Màire Ní Bhroin

    How profound! The thought that if Jesus succumbed to temptation to wordly power for an earthly kingdom, He would be remembered merely as a “governor of Syria or a Satrap if Babylon”. This should give us both pause & strength when we are practicing our individual faith journeys. This reflection certainly rebukes the concepts from the popular ‘new age’ book ‘The Secret’ and indeed, the ‘modern Christian’ mentality that God should give us untold wealth and prosperity. Yet, He does give us our ‘daily bread’, clothes and shelter us, enough to spare to give and to share.

  • Anton D

    • Elizabeth

      beautiful reflection to recognize where I am being lead by Jesus.

  • rtclovesmac

    In this reflection God is teaching us whom we are to serve.

    And likewise we are also told in scripture to serve those God places in authority over us. This can get confusing .

    And finally there is our desire to do good which may be in conflict with God’s plan.

    I think it crazy to having the Devil tempting Jesus with Earthly kingdoms that the Devil himself acknowledges wee given to him.

    Who gave them to him…none other than Gid himself.

  • Christine Overkamp

    Big or small, it comes down to “choice”. One needs to be ever vigilant and ask for God’s guidance in our decision making. If we put it in God’s hands, and truly accept his leadership, we will be given whatever is needed to carry out the choice we make. God only LOVES us for who we are and we are going to make mistakes but when we do, we need to recognize it for what it is, if possible fix it, and then move on. God is always with us (for this I am POSITIVE). Blessings to all and especially during this Lenten season.

    • Emmalee

      I agree Christine. People have told me that prayer is the only thing a person has left. I say that prayer and God’s guidance are the first place I go. Jesus take over is one of my favorite prayers

      • Mel

        Let us all encourage each other to pray

      • Holly

        What is the prayer Jesus take over

  • Vilma

    Amen – Him ALONE shall you adore! http://www.shepherdoffaith.com

  • Barbara Ann Baugh

    The part of scripture that stood out most vividly to me is in all the temptations the Devil questions Jesus identity “if you be the Son of God” When we are tempted to reach for power it is often a search for “self”

    Next I thought about the “Kingdoms of the world” .showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a single instant”, I can imagine those “kingdoms” included the “kingdoms” of the 21st century. They probably included the great multinational corporations. The workplace provides many temptations to power. How often are we stab a fellow employee in order to gain more power . How often are we tempted to treat subordinates unjustly because we can and we feel power in doing this. How often do we neglect doing God’s work because we are pursuing power in the workplace.
    We want to have the power to control our destiny (and everybody else’s) instead of turning our life over to God.
    Please pray for me. I will receive the anointing of the sick. tomorrow. I will have a tricky operation on Wednesday

    • Dude_Abides

      Amen Barbara. May we pray that our Lord look out for you in this time of trail. “Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion” Psalm 103:2-4

      • Barbara Ann Baugh

        Thank you

    • Elizabeth

      Remember God is with you, the doctors and staff at the hospital. I pray you sense God’s presence and are at Peace as you go to be helped with your malady. Amen.

      • Barbara Ann Baugh

        Thank you for your prayers

    • http://www.irishmike.org/ Michael Lee Cornwell

      Hi Barbara,

      I have asked At Michael, the Archangel to choose from the armies of angels the Lord has put him in charge of, to place around you as many angels he deems necessary to protect you and the hospital staff who are involved in your care especially during the surgery. May the Lord allow to see or feel their prssence during this time.

      I have seen and felt them many years ago after receiving the Eucharist during the Mass, a blessing I cannot explain nor forget!

      God is with you always and everywhere to comfort and calm your fears..

      Peace and prayers,

      Michael
      The Prayer Warrior

      • Barbara Ann Baugh

        Thank you so much Michael. I do need all the prayers I can get as some complications came up yesterday. And I need to see the Dr. tomorrow.

    • concerned citizen

      I will also be praying for you Barbra. I will be praying to St. Padre Pio for your successful surgery.

      • Barbara Ann Baugh

        Thank-you for your prayers

  • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom stark61555

    I have to know this: isn’t it a problem of power temptation WITHIN THE CHURCH TO PUT OTHERS DOWN BECAUSE THEY DON’T HAVE WHAT THIS PERSON OR THAT PERSON THINKS OR MANDATES WITHOUT AUTHORITY … WHAT IS NECESSARY FOR FAITH PRACTICE? Very simple, this is a problem also. So many people have put my hub and I down while in our 40s and 30s when kids didn’t come after trying and trying. S0 we say now! Big deal! We are now in our 50s. We never did have kids. So? We do not see it as a cross. Enough is enough. There are so many large families that look down on people like us without kids. Our marriage is better because we have been through hell because of THEIR DISDAIN. These people think they are God and do God[‘s will but they are patronizing and make fun of priests and bishops that do not agree with them. Then they act like the devil because they think they are God. Thus, the temptation of power and thinking they do God’s will when in truth they are a source of misery for themselves and others.

    • Barbara Ann Baugh

      Whenever we put someone down we are giving into the temptation to power.

    • Elizabeth

      When we put our trust in God and not bother what other people think or say, that is when we have peace in our heart.
      I can relate to a marriage without children, crying the time of the month. We had a very special relationship because we could grow in our relationship that people we knew married for 25 years did not have what we had. However, we wanted to share our love and were accepted for adoption. However, it was not to be. Seven months after cancer diagnosis my husband died.
      I Pray, stark61555, you will make this Lenten journey with us one where you can see with the eyes of God. Our Lord who has upheld you and your husband all these years. Our Lord who wants to put his arms around you and know you both are loved for who you are. Amen.

      • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom stark61555

        Plain and simple I do not like using words others like to hear. Two words I know much of: God’s presence. I am not going to have the same Lenten journey that is in the box or beeeyuuhuuuux as the Midwest people say. I never did cry the time of the month. What in the hell gave you that idea? We also eat better than most people. I usually have a salad for dinner: can of salmon with Caesar bag of greens. No junk food. I abhore those people and plan to throw them in the Gulf of Mexico. They try and tell priests what to do and make them feel not good enough.

        • Elizabeth

          I made reference to my experience. What does beeeyuuhuuuux mean???

          • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom stark61555

            Ok context before I eat dinner here. I live in Florida and hear a lot of bad Midwestern accents of old people who come here. It is the bad Midwestern way of saying box. I meant inside the box. They say it so backwards like beeeeeyuuuuuuhhhhhux like it is spelled. Atrocious! And it sounds ignorant. God didn’t allow man to have knowledge on this earth for us to sound ignorant.

    • Emmalee

      I had to have a hysterectomy at age 31. I was in nursing school – I couldn’t finish without the surgery. I, too, have been grilled about marriage and children. Adoption as a single mother, you name it. I am nearly 58 and have done fine with the Lord at my side. I can understand to some degree where you are coming from.

      • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom Tampa Lady

        I have ways of dealing with them now. For the overload mommies I have called or notified employers of what they have written. OMG, I only do this if it gets “bad.” It has gotten bad a few times. Otherwise, I don’t care. It depends on how mad I get. I do defend myself. They have accused me of just about everything under the ^&* sun. Generally, I am not a church chat Walmart jumper dweeby Catholic wimpy woman. Stand up for yourself. I have also called parishes and reported them. NO way will I a card carrying Catholic as good as they are take any crap. Stand up for yourself. My late Father raised me better than that. These people are bullies and you do not have to take it. The priest that married my hub and I the now pastor of St Lawrence in Tampa Florida said I am “no less a woman because I have no kids because we are unable.” Verify this and you can call him. Tell him Jeanne said hey.

  • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom stark61555

    They say you must homeschool and have 15 kids when they cannot pay for their own. #ignorance.

  • Nancy Janzen

    The danger always is that even those wanting to do good can be seduced into the politics of division. At times as a poor white person I hesitate to apply for benefits because I don’t want to be used by liberals as a baseball bat to beat up on conservatives. Quit using the poor to make your points.

    • Emmalee

      On the other hand, the conservatives in my state want to drug test all those receiving unemployment and food stamps. We are told we are lazy. My employment money ran out months ago and I still get food stamps. I believe the Lord has allowed this so I can address these issues with those of such a mindset.. No one party is perfect and I will say that many conservatives do whatever they can to beat down those struggling. We also need to remember there is such a thing as being a moderate – not just the two sides.

  • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom stark61555

    Quit using the poor? What the b loop do you mean by that? I agree with your first sentence. I don’t give a dart about politics. I just go vote and none of you will know who I vote for. That is not your business. Are you like those f0lks who disdained us? We have no TV during this election season. I have no need for white trashy debates and Walmart ignorant answers. I was always raised by a good Catholic pair of parents who urged me and mandated that I use my talents.

  • http://findmeinflorida.wordpresscom stark61555

    Get the benefits you deserve and most of the time, fight for your rights because God Triune doesn’t want you to be a doormat. As a woman, I was taught that a woman should be able to take care of herself because of the use of talents: fixing cars and knowing how to fix household items without getting rippedoff is and has been a mandate. Men should not be able to have power over women because they do not know how to do something. Balance and giving an account for taking care of yourself is important. I don’t talk to either side and don’t care about either side I care about what God thinks and keep the TV off. Then those people do NOT HAVE power over me.

  • Candace Meifert

    Since all earthly kingdoms are ruled by satan, his lies, powers and deceptions, then when we vote in elections , are we not going along with all of this? How, as a Catholic do we deal with it, knowing this? Are we not playing in to all these lies and deceptions?

    • Barbara Ann Baugh

      Pray to the Holy Spirit when you enter the booth. I believe that I can safely bet that our next president will be the worst ever president.

      • Candace Meifert

        Regardless of who becomes president , Jesus will always be King! ( I saw that saying somewhere and it is so true! )

        • Barbara Ann Baugh

          Yes and whatever worldly kingdom we live in be it political or corporate. We shall always be free men and women in the Kingdom of Heaven

          • Candace Meifert

            Amen to that Barbara!

        • Emmalee

          We don’t know the outcome but it is important to pray for all elected officials.

      • rtclovesmac

        I hope u r wrong

    • Candace Meifert

      Barbara, I am not understanding your meaning. If one prays to the Holy Spirit and goes into the voting booth, if anything it should help us make the best choice, not the worst ever. if you truly believe, as I do.

    • Elizabeth

      We should hold prayer vigils to pray that, “We will overcome.”

      • Candace Meifert

        Great idea Elizabeth! The power of prayer transcends all evil.

      • Emmalee

        You can start with my state of WI – lots of problems here.

    • rtclovesmac

      It is not our votes that lead to these deceptions.

      They are reflections of our beliefs and matter He who knows your heart.

      Trust in God and all will be good even when they look bad.

      The struggles that have emerged from our leaders failing to follow God have opened many doors for us to share God’s love and Metcy to those who may not have shared in their blessing

      • Candace Meifert

        Yes, but in our voting, how can we be sure we are voting for a person who truly upholds God’s laws? Since it is Satan who rules this kingdom? As Catholices , we despise abortion, vote against it always, yet in turn we vote for those who turn their backs on the poor! Support the very rich in this society, corporate welfare etc. Refuse to vote against gun violence? Did Jesus carry a weapon? I think not! We now shoot rather than turn the other cheek! What did Jesus say about the rich? We all who read scripture know what he said. So either way we vote we are voting wrong. Will there ever be a candidate who truly votes according to scripture ? the Greek Scriptures) not in this culture!

      • Candace Meifert

        I don’t mean to undermine anyone in their political ideology, yet these questions are valid I believe. As Christians have we become more hypocritical than following truth!

    • Emmalee

      I went to my confessor each year there was an election. He helped me sort things out. Then I could be an informed and conscientious Catholic voter.

  • Penelope

    A reflection that really makes me think – thank you, Bishop Barron!

    As small a place that I hold in my little corner of the world, I too want so much to be a conduit for God through whom “the divine love can surge into creation”. Our priest spoke to us on Sunday about political correctness and the things that can cause us to become confused and unclear about sin. Every day I see around me: sin being legalized, sin being made acceptable through various media – recently I was stunned to see a televised ad about condoms. We are continually bombarded with wrongful messages that seep subtly and insidiously into the subconscious of the general public at an alarming rate; temptations are in the every day occurrence in all of our lives. And they come fast and furious.
    I cannot take for granted the gift of faith that I received at my Baptism – Jesus died for me – I have to be proactive. I am so grateful for all of the comments I have read here about the many riches of our Catholic faith (Thanks to all!) – Graces freely offered to us by God to strengthen us and lead us! I am especially grateful to the Lord for my prayer partner husband, for my family and for my brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, for my spiritual director, and for the rules of discernment of Saint Ignatius of Loyola.

    I want my life to be a living window pane for God, for those around me, because on top of watching television and the world, they also watch, see, me. Jesus has shown me the way, that I may walk in it. Unlike Jesus, I make mistakes, but I know and I trust that he will bring good out of it, for me, and for those around me, because and thanks (as our priest reminded us) to the Divine Mercy and Love of God.

    These are two prayers that I pray often:
    “Search my heart and know me O God, see if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139
    and, particularly when I serve at church in any way…
    “Lord, don’t let them see me; let them see You.”
    In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

  • Linda Dokey

    We Adore YOU O CHRIST,BECAUSE BY YOUR HOLY CROSS YOU HAVE REDEEMED THE WORLD. AMEN

  • Nancy Rynders

    This reflection goes well with the homily I heard Sunday. The priest compared the temptations of Jesus in the desert with temptations we face every day. Turning stone to bread alludes to temptations of pleasure, and of course the temptation of power can exist in our every day activities. Father suggested looking to Scripture, as Jesus did when speaking to the devil, to help us resist those temptations.

  • kayeloney@cox.net

    This is all true Power has always corrupted mankind, that is because of the Human Will which is full of evil. That is exactly why everyone should give their Human Will back to Jesus everyday, ask the Holy Mother Mary to seal that Human Will in her Immaculate Heart, and give you the Divine Will of Jesus to pray and be in unity with Him. This will put your Soul in safety where it belongs with Jesus. Do not let the World and the evil of the devil seduce you. Be safe with Jesus in Heaven where you will be happy. The Earth holds many things, but your internal Soul is not one of them, your Soul belongs in Heaven with Jesus.

  • Norma

    We are all tempted in our daily life, whether in power or one of the mundane weaknesses. We are all prone to be seduce by the evil one, therefore I think going to mass and have the sacraments of confession and eucharist can save us from the seductions of the evil one, and do not leave out preyer.

  • johnschuh

    Learning from the Scriptures that all power is from God, we must obey even unjust rulers, but not lift a finger to keep them from suffering God’sj judgment.

  • Holly

    Christine this is so true. I share your thoughts!