Today is the First Sunday of Lent. Our Gospel reading is from Mark 1. St. Mark recounts the forty days that Jesus spent fasting and praying in the desert before He began His public ministry. While He was in the desert, Satan came to tempt and test him. St. Mark’s version is very short, but we know what happened. (To get a more vivid account, read Matthew 4:1-11.)
We must always remember that Jesus, though fully God, was also fully man. He was made of flesh and blood. He felt the same things that we feel. So Satan thought that he could exploit that and bring Jesus around to follow him. The first thing he goes after is Jesus’ stomach. Jesus had not eaten for forty days, and He was hungry. But He would not give in to His hunger. Next, Satan went after His ego. But Jesus would not become a slave to His ego. Lastly, Satan went after Jesus’ Father, testing His trust. No dice, Satan.
Satan is a pretty smart guy. He knows every trick in the book to tempt. Nothing in his bag of tricks would work on Jesus. When Satan hits us with the big three…our bodies (flesh), our egos and our trust in God…how will we fare?
Father, you know how weak we can be when tempted. Help us to turn our hearts and minds to you always, especially in the face of temptation. Amen.