When you feel tempted to commit a sin, try these brief remedies.
Often the most difficult sins to overcome are those that we commit on a daily basis. For many of us they become second nature and so ingrained into our daily habits that it is difficult to break free from the hold they have on us.
Thankfully, with God’s grace, it is possible to break free from that yoke of slavery and embrace a life of freedom and virtue.
Venerable Louis of Granada, a Dominican priest of the 16th century, gave his advice in a book rightly called The Sinner’s Guide. In it, he gives a step-by-step plan for sinners who want to start practicing virtue and be released from their slavery to sin.
Granada writes, “The following short considerations … you can use with advantage at the moment of temptation. They were found among the writings of a man of great sanctity, who had himself experienced their efficacy.”
3. When tempted to pride
In temptations to pride he would say: When I reflect upon the depth of humility to which the Son of God, the second Person of the Blessed Trinity, descended for love of me, I feel that, however profound a contempt men may have for me, I yet deserve to be still more humbled and despised.
2. When tempted to covet another’s possessions
When attacked by covetousness he would think: Having once understood that nothing but God can satisfy the heart, I am convinced of the folly of seeking anything but this supreme Good.
3. When tempted with lustful thoughts
In assaults against purity he would reflect: To what a dignity has my body been raised by the reception of the Holy Eucharist! I tremble, therefore, at the sacrilege I would commit by profaning with carnal pleasures this temple in which God has chosen to dwell.
4. When tempted to unhealthy anger
Against anger he would defend himself by saying: No injury should be capable of moving me to anger when I reflect upon the outrages I have offered my God.
When assailed by temptations to hatred he would answer the enemy: Knowing the mercy with which God has received me and pardoned my sins, I cannot refuse to forgive my greatest enemy.
5. When tempted to gluttony
When attacked by gluttony he would say: I call to mind the vinegar and gall which were offered to Our Savior on the cross, and shall I not blush if I do not deny my appetite or endure something for the expiation of my sins?
6. When tempted to sloth
In temptations to sloth he would arouse himself by the thought: Eternal happiness can be purchased by a few years of labor here below; shall I, then, shrink from any toil for so great a reward?
7. When tempted to slander others
Charity, which appreciates the duty of fraternal correction, answers: You must neither publish your neighbor’s sins nor be accessory to them; but reprove him with mildness and patiently bear with him. Moreover, it is the part of wisdom sometimes to ignore the faults of another until a favorable opportunity occurs for warning him against them.