How to Resist Temptation
Publisher: Sophia Institute Press
Publication Date: October 15, 2001
One can argue that there has never been so much temptation in the world as there is now. Satan reaches out in so many different ways. How can we overcome such a persistent assault? First, we must learn how to fight. The event of temptation is where spiritual warfare takes place. In this book, Fr. Remler supplies you with the armor and weaponry to effectively engage in spiritual battle.
Many people see temptation as a danger that will cause you to fall backwards in the spiritual life. But there’s a flip side to that coin. As Fr. Remler illustrates, temptation also gives you a tremendous opportunity to earn heavenly merit. It’s how you become a saint. It’s how you can show God that you are willing to fight for Him instead of giving yourself over to poisoned pleasures.
There are a great many lessons in this book including answers to questions such as:
- How do you avoid occasions of sin?
- What is delectation and how does it relate to sin?
- How do you recognize the elements of temptation?
- How do you distinguish between willful and unwillful temptations?
Let Fr. Remler gives you the tools so that when temptations begin to assail your soul, you'll be ready. How to Resist Temptation is essential reading for every serious Catholic.
"Temptations, therefore, are meant to reveal whether the love that a soul claims to have for God is genuine and true, and not mere hollow sham and vain pretense. They are the avid test of the spiritual life."
"It must be borne in mind that penance is done not only by chastising ourselves for sins committed, but also by denying ourselves and refusing to grant to the passions what they crave by the commission of new sins."
"Far more necessary than fasting from food and drink is the practice of perfect patience with his neighbor, the refraining from saying and doing unkind things, fidelity to his prayers and the duties of his state of life, and in the matter of holy purity, the resolute avoidance of every form of dangerous amusement."
"Firmness of will, then, is very necessary, but it is not enough. It is also necessary that you try to remain calm, self-controlled, composed in mind and body. Above all, guard against making use of nervous outward actions and gestures for the purpose of manifesting your interior resistance."
There's a great deal of profound lessons in this little manual. The will may precede the intellect, nevertheless, I feel that Fr. Remler's intellectual approach does a lot to help a person to resist temptation. For example, Father explains to not simply concentrate on avoiding sinning but also to avoid occasions of sin in the first place. This cuts the problem off at the head. Also I really enjoyed his explanation of the merits of overcoming temptation. It's one of the ways a person can prove their love for God, and also, that's how a person gains merit in heaven. Someone who never sins but who also is never tempted, earns far fewer merits in heaven than someone who is continually tempted but nonetheless resists. That's a comforting thought. These are only a couple of the great lessons that Fr. Remler puts forth in this book. I highly recommend it for anyone who is looking to advance in their spiritual life.
I am currently reading this book on Kindle. I am, as of this post, 72% into the book, and already I have learnt a lot. I wished that I had found this book years ago, it would have saved me a lot of bother! Having read that the Lord sends temptations to test the faith of His people and how our patient triumph over each temptation advances our spiritual life, and gives us a higher degree of holiness has really made me see a whole new dimension to temptation. How many people's lives would be different if they only read this book and put its teaching into action! This book is the direct answer to years of asking the Lord why He allows me to be, at times, so violently tempted: He is trying to advance my spiritual life. This is definitely a book that I will have to read repeatedly. Since it can be read in a couple of hours (according to Goodreads), I think a once a month read or something of similar regularity is needed.