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May the Lord richly bless you! I’ll leave you with a final meditation:
“There was a man wanted to do evil, but first prayed as usual. On finding himself prevented by God, he was then extremely thankful.” — St. Mark the Ascetic
I was speaking to a man the other day who said that, after years of trying various programs, he finally overcame his addiction to online porn by prefacing every impulse to “view” with this prayer: “Blessed Mother, All-Pure One, please come and sit with me as I…” He continued, “I’ve never been able to finish that prayer.”
It struck me as a modern version of Luke 8:43-48.
Most American Christians are, effectively, Pelagians in the way they approach problems, i.e. the first instinct in times of need or trial is not to pray, but to problem solve, to go it alone, to clench the fists, to self-rely. A priest said it well in a homily I heard recently on this subject,
…you find yourself distressed or disturbed, stripped of your usual props. Before you pop a pill, phone a friend, turn on the iPad for distraction — stop, look up and say: God, come to my assistance; Lord, make haste to help me! Relate to Him your struggle, open your clenched fist to receive in the prayerful pause His quiet grace, and then do your thing. The difference? In the first case you’re on your own, while in the second “the battle is the Lord’s.”