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Article by Michael H. Brown at Spirit Daily

Quote:A priest was saying the other day that the truth always bears fruit. It is always good. How could it not be? Jesus is the Truth and the Light. Without truth, we have no illumination.

The truth is that you were made to be good and affirming and the truth is also that in life there are things and people who, yes, are a danger to you. It's the way things are. It doesn't mean the person is at fault. It doesn't mean the person is evil. Spirits cling. They attach.

Don't get me wrong:

It is critical in this walk called life to have good "first thoughts." You need to always start out in a positive frame of mind. If you don't, there will be trouble later, on the other side, during a review of your life (and thoughts). It is a key, love, to a tabernacle in the soul (where we connect with the Holy Spirit). If you want to find favor and peace, get into the habit of making your "first thoughts" positive ones -- finding the good, the Godly, the worth, in everyone. Keep trained on that and you will accomplish far more than you ever thought you could. Your spirit, at peace, will know it. Your spirit will find rest. When we remove the barrier of negativity, love flows in abundance, and love guides and covers over a multitude of sins. Dislike does the opposite. Criticality "reverses the blessing." The strongest men are the men who love strongest; they are not insecure about their masculinity. The holiest women are those who love strongest. (Holiness is masculine and feminine.)

But are there dangers?

Never affirm in a way that's contrived, shallow, dishonest -- that is not true, just for the sake of affirming. It's a matter of prayer and balance. True love is loving in total truth. Pride blinds. It finds fault with everyone (and everything). Truth comes through humility. One cannot love fully without humbleness.

See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download
the highest resolution version available.Still, there are those hidden dangers. Indeed.

"Satan has his Trojan horses," notes author Paul Thigpen in a very valuable new work called Manual for Spiritual Warfare. "He sometimes tempts us to embrace what looks like a desirable gift. But despite the attractive appearance, it's actually a catastrophe waiting for an invitation to invade.

"Blessed Pope Paul VI noted this danger when he warned that many Christians in modern times are 'exposing their souls -- their baptized souls, visited so often by the Eucharistic Presence and inhabited by the Holy Spirit! -- to licentious sensual experiences and to harmful drugs, as well as to the ideological seductions of fashionable errors. These are cracks through which the Evil One can easily penetrate and change the human mind.'

"In addition, forgiveness is crucial to deliverance from the Evil One, because a bitter heart gives him a foothold in our lives. If we're ever tempted to invite the Enemy into our 'camp' in any of these ways, we must recognize the Adversary's deception and reject his offer firmly and immediately. And if we've ever committed such sins in the past, but have never confessed them, we need to confess them to God, seeking forgiveness and healing in the sacrament of Reconciliation." Otherwise, we are open to dangers that may be presented by others -- or we can become dangerous. When there is darkness within, spirits cling.

As the book points out, there are small lizards that are crafty and can infiltrate the smallest places just as there are "little" sins that find their way into our heart. "We may ignore them or think them of no consequence as we try to stand guard over the carefully constructed fortifications of our spiritual life, but they bear the image of their father, 'that ancient Serpent' (Revelation 22:2), and enough of them can eventually overrun our defenses.

"When Saint Teresa of Ávila wrote about The Interior Castle of the soul, she warned against 'those poisonous little reptiles,' as she called them -- the creeping spiritual pests that subtly storm the castle."

7 Steps to Beat Pornography and MasturbationTo resist the temptations of ordinary demonic activity, the book points out, we must guard our thoughts closely and reject any that lead to sin. The spiritual battle begins and ends in our thoughts. The mind is the battlefield. To examine thought all day every day is the pursuit of he who has wisdom. Always, examine the conscience. Make sure all thoughts are grounded in love but also reality.

It is an essential -- the truth, with love -- of spiritual warfare.

For the devil is the opposite: the father of lies and hate. The truth sets us free. The truth also heals.

Mainly, we dissuade the enemy -- resist him -- by expelling "self" and offering all to God: giving everything to our Father Who gives all to us. How to get through this minefield? How not to sin while we remain on earth, subject to the wiles?

As I point out in What You Take To Heaven:

"When Saint Anthony the hermit saw how many snares there are in the world, he called out, 'Who can ever escape so many dangers?' and heard a Voice say, 'Anthony, humility alone walks securely; he who goes with head bowed down, need not fear to fall into these snares.'"