“Did God really say, ‘You shall not eat from any of the trees in the garden’?” Satan’s words to Eve reveal much. He is a liar who uses doubt to try and separate us from God. (If only Eve had discerned who was speaking, she might have responded differently.) Thousands of years later his modus operandi hasn’t changed much.
No greater joy have I experienced than being a father to three daughters. From the moment they were born I have marveled at their purity, beauty, and innocence. Equally, no greater battle have I experienced than helping them stay this way. Discerning who is whispering is one of the most valuable lessons they have learned.
Discernment begins and ends with prayer. Saint Ignatius teaches that in a grace-filled soul, the promptings of the Holy Spirit produce peace and joy, or consolation. The promptings of the evil spirit produce the opposite effect, disturbance and selfishness, or desolation.
As we get ready for Advent, don’t allow Satan’s whisperings to dampen your resolve. Don’t allow him to steal your peace or to distract you from His plan for your life. Don’t give his lies a place to dwell. Do pray to God. Do discern who is whispering. Do trust in Jesus. Beware of the wolf in sheep’s clothing. And let Saint Catherine of Siena’s words be your own, “Give not ear to what the devil whispers to you.”