The Lonely Moment

The devil has many tools, but one of his favorites is to confuse the issue.  He likes to make our choice to sin or not to sin as complicated as it can possibly be.  He’ll try to get us thinking about other people, what they’ll think of us, the possible negative consequences if we do the right thing, and so on.

In reality, though, none of those things have any bearing on a moral decision.  Even if disaster follows on the heels of doing the right thing (which it usually doesn’t), the right thing was still the right thing to do.  The more we think about the devil’s distractors, which don’t matter, the less we will concentrate on God’s will, which does.

As a result, I often find it useful to think about my own spiritual choices in terms of what I call “the lonely moment”.  My fears are irrelevant to my decision.  I erase them from my mental picture of the situation.  My desires are equally irrelevant.  I erase them too.  Also on the erasure list are people, contingencies, and nearly everything else.

When I’m done, I’m left with a lonely world.  I’m in it, my understanding of God’s will is in it, and the choice before me is in it.  That’s it.  After all, those are the only things that must continue to exist for me to make a moral decision.

Then, when I consider my choice in light of God’s will, in the absence of all the distractors, my choice is clear.  It may not be an easy choice, but at least I can discern what I ought to do.

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