Lenten Reflections – Day 2

18 Feb

No man knows how bad he  is till he has tried very  hard to be good. A silly idea is current that good people do not know what  temptation means. This is an  obvious lie. Only those  who try to resist temptation know how strong it is. After all, you find out the strength of the German army by fighting  against  it, not by  giving in. You find out the  strength of a wind by trying to walk against it,  not by lying down. A man  who  gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later.

That is why bad people,  in one sense, know very little about badness. They have  lived a sheltered life by  always  giving in.  We never find out the strength of  the evil  impulse inside us until we  try to fight it: and Christ, because He was the only man who never yielded to temptation, is also the only man who knows to the full what temptation means-the only complete realist.

C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

One Response to “Lenten Reflections – Day 2”

  1. Kat February 18, 2010 at 4:08 pm #

    Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is.

    Oh, yeah… Lewis was a very wise man!

    Thanks again, Michael – very helpful for today. [sending hugs to you and your family]

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