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Warfare of the spiritual life

I am convinced that a meaningful and true spiritual life cannot be but a warfare. I am more and more disappointed with the fluffy Christianity we are living nowadays, in which everything has to look joyful and pretty.

If there is no fight, if we are not like warriors, there is no real Christian life, but just a parody. St. Paul has said it well, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

If there is no good fight, the faith is not there, it is just self-reassurance. There is no better praise of this living in the flesh than the incarnation of Jesus.

Lorenzo Scupoli, a spiritual writer from the 16th century wrote, “One of the requisites in the spiritual combat is perseverance in the continual mortification of our unruly passions; for never in this life are they utterly subdued, but take root in the human heart like weeds in fertile soil.

“This is a battle from which we cannot escape; ours is a foe we cannot evade. The fight against passion will last a lifetime, and he who lays down his arms will be slain.

“Moreover, we must combat enemies who hate us with unquenchable fury and are consecrated to our destruction. The more we would make friends with them, the more they would make derelicts of us.

“But be not daunted by their strength or number, for in this war, he alone is conquered who voluntarily surrenders, and the entire power of our enemies is in the hands of that captain under whose banner we fight.

“And not only will he preserve us from treachery, but he will be our champion. He who is infinitely superior to all our foes will crown you with conquest, provided you, as a warrior, rely not on your own finite powers, but on his almighty power and infinite goodness.”

Once we enter in this kind of mentality, the combat can start and the war may be won.



                             • Aurelio Porfiri