The Warrior and the Faith

Paulo Coelho

‘You may have heard it said that Abbot John has no more temptations to conquer,’ he said.
‘However, a lack of struggle weakens the soul.

Let us ask the Lord to send Abbot John a great temptation, and if he manages to conquer it,
let us ask the Lord to send him another, and another.

And when he is once more struggling against temptations, let us pray that he may never say:
“Lord, remove this demon from me.”

Let us pray that he asks:
“Lord, give me strength to confront evil.”’

The last sentence is particularly important, it reminds us that we cannot change what has happened to us or the circumstances we find ourselves in. The only thing we can do is to gather the strength to accept, endure and find a way through. It is that persistent courage to endure that allows us to understand why this is happening, it gives us greater meaning, even out of situations that seem absent of hope. It is the strength to keep moving even when you don’t know where you are or where the path will take you. Our lives are great adventures, whether we accept it or not, that contain twists, turns and falls. Rather than pushing these away, use them to build strength and meaning. We often deny what is happening to us, choosing to be busy, finding something to keep us distracted, but it never goes away unless we face up to it. You can watch as much TV, buy as many things or use substances, but you cannot run away from challenges you have in your life. Denial of these challenges, whether they be psychological or physical, place a weight on us over time if we do not face them head on. We carry this round with us, moment by moment, day by day. It’s present in our interactions with our loved ones, and with those we encounter. Walk forward with courage, deal with the wounds, small step by step, and you will find solace. It’s never too late. Those who are brave enough to accept the light and the dark are often rewarded with the meaning as to why. The reward is often the process, not some end goal, that is a mirage. Perhaps one of the greatest misconceptions that pervades society.

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