When I am weak

jesus-heals-the-blind-manDay zero?

I am not doing well. I’ve been falling all over the place for the past week; entirely unable — or unwilling? — to stand. I did fall rather terribly not long after my last post. And I think nearly every day since. I went to Confession and to Mass on Sunday. That should have given me some strength. I lasted most of the day Monday, but rather intentionally led myself into temptation that night; I don’t have any excuse or anyone else to blame. I missed my toys and didn’t want to leave them alone.

There is often that feeling that I’m leaving them “alone” — that if I don’t spend time with them, they will be lonely, or else they’ll be going to waste. I have poured so much time and effort into them. The one project in particular — my collection of “models” — calls to me constantly as something unfinished that I have to finish. There are some two-thousand models that I’ve “collected” that have to be rated and filed.

I fell back into another project this week that I had abandoned for some months: a “collection” of “real” girls on Facebook that I had found and liked. This originally had the seedier purpose of finding “faces” for my “evil dolls” — girls I would animate and pretend to be online for my self-gratification. I’ve managed to stave off that temptation for the most part lately; just the “possessing” has been occupying my attention. The evil dolls always hurt someone else in their deception; and I do still have a heart.

I used to get up every morning and pray and read my Bible and have my devotions. The devil’s latest trick — and I do think this is the devil, or at least one of his lieutenants — is to pounce on me with temptation as soon as I roll out of bed, to distract me from having that time, my only source and strength and hope. This morning the dark one almost led me into much deeper and darker things than I’ve been involved with for a very long time — this was his plan — but thanks be to God, I was sidetracked by something in the end rather benign and blessed: celebrity crushes, on a pair of intoxicatingly beautiful and decent young actresses. It’s refreshing sometimes to remember that I’m not so deviant and lost as to be unaffected by the common attractions that affect young males all around the world.

I’m afraid I’m too weak to pull myself up today. The right thing to do, I know, is to drop what I’m doing and to put on sackcloth and ashes and to throw myself on the mercy of God; but I just don’t think I’m going to be able to do that today. These barbs are in me and pulling me along. Tomorrow — tomorrow I will go back. Tomorrow I have to go back. Because I’m obligated to go back. One strength of being Catholic — one reason I know I am where I’m supposed to be — is that I can never run very far. I’m always obligated to go back. I’ve heard some critics say that the weekly obligation of attending Mass on Sundays is an onerous and legalistic requirement; but it’s there for our own protection. The ability of some Protestants to say they’re not going to church one week because they “don’t feel like it” or “have other things to do” seems to me more a vulnerability and a curse than a blessing; more a sign of negligence and uncaring on the part of the church than it is a freedom. Tomorrow I will be back. I will go to Confession, and receive the Holy Eucharist, and my loving and merciful Jesus will forgive me for my sins, and pick me up and put me on my feet again. And if I only lean on His strength, I won’t be weak again.

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