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THE WILES OF THE ENEMY:The enemy tries to put as many obstacles in our way or trick us toquit the fight. Here are some of his famous tricks.You resist for a long time then you are overcome, so he suggests toyou that since all is lost, why not indulge some more and try later.Wrong! Since you fought with courage, all is not lost, you did not losethe war, you just got wounded in the battle. Do not give in and wallowin your impurity because that is treason! If you lost while fighting, youdeserve a reward! To give in to his suggestion that “all is lost” and that“it doesn’t matter any more” is to help him rob you of your reward! So,stand up and resume fighting and do not give in to the thoughts ofdefeat, and the Lord, who endured the temptations of the devil, willpity you and help you.The other trick is this. He suggests to you that since in the end youare going to lose, so why bother fighting? He tried this one on a monkand the monk told him, “One blow for you and one blow for me!” It islike a boxing match. You try to give your opponent as many blows asyou can regardless of how many blows you receive. Only at the end ofthe match will you know the score !Another famous trick is this. You fall into sin, you feel guilty andwant to go back to God and ask for forgiveness. The devil rebukes yousaying, “How dare you show your face or talk to God after what youhave done!” And then he suggests to you, “Wait for a few hours or afew days until you are “clean” and then pray! Wrong! You come toGod as you are. When the Prodigal Son decided to come back, he cameimmediately. He had the stench of the swine he had been living with alloverhim. He did not wait to put clean clothes on him. It was the Fatherwho took away his filthy clothes and gave him a clean robe. The Fatherdid not disdain the stench of his son. He was overcome by His love forhis son who was dead and is now alive. He ran and embraced him eventhough he had the stench of sin all-over him.Father Lev Gilet, an Orthodox monk noted for his spiritual writings,once wrote this, “You must be certain that in the same moment thatyou are committing sin, God loves you.” The devil may suggestotherwise but he is a liar.So, as soon as you fall, immediately go on your knees before yourloving Father and tell Him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven, andbefore Thee, and am no more worthy to be called Thy son.”Immediately you will feel the warm embrace of the Father and Hisloving kisses. Once more you are on your feet fighting again withcourage. Needless to say that this initial act of repentance does not takethe place of confessing to your Father in confession.Another trick he will try is this one. He comes and says to you, “Howmany times you have done this? Do you think God will go on acceptingyou every time you come running back to Him?” The answer is yes! Forwhen Peter asked the Lord how many times he should forgive hisbrother every day, the Lord answered him seven times seventy. Don’tyou think the Lord Who expects us to forgive each other seven timesseventy every day will give us the same chance? As many times as youfall, come back to God. He will never turn His back on you.A lay person went into a monastery and asked one of the monks,“what makes you different from us who live in the world?” and themonk answered, “We fall, then we rise up, then we fall, then we rise upthen we fall then we rise up!” You see, we are all in the same boat!