TYPICAL FEARS LEVELLED AND LAUNCHED BY THE DEVIL TO PREVENT RECEIVING THE SACRAMENT OF CONFESSION
1.SINS TOO GREAT! The devil can convince us that our sins are too many and too great! How astute the devil, but how wrong! Jesus did not come for the perfect or the saints who have no sins. On the contrary, Jesus came to save the sinners. Bishop Sheen points out that the primary purpose and mission of Jesus’ coming was SAVIOR—he came to save us of our sins. The forgiveness of sins is expressed most especially by Sacramental Confession!
2.TOMORROW. The devil of tomorrow is never too far away. How often do we put off for tomorrow, especially in our spiritual lives, what we should do today! In Spanish there is the phrase that says it all: “La Filosofia de la manana!” No hurry; I will do it tomorrow! Read the classic work by C.S. Lewis Screwtape Letters and you will learn the tactics of the devil, especially in convincing us in the art of procrastination!
3.I GET NERVOUS: MY MIND GOES BLANK!!! This might be the case, but to remedy this why not prepare yourself the night before the day you confess and write out your sins on a sheet of paper as a guide and as a memory—helper! Mission accomplished and devil defeated, for those of short-term memory!
4.THE PRIEST KNOWS ME!!! Easy to conquer this devil! You can simply go behind the confessional screen and make an anonymous confession. However, even if it were face to face, the priest will admire you more and more for your great humility. Moreover, priests who confess often have most likely heard these sins many times over and will not be shocked and have a heart-attack!!! Also, priests are afflicted with weakness and have to confess their sins to other priests. (Hebrews 5:2)
5.THE PRIEST MIGHT TELL MY SINS! Never! The priest is obliged; otherwise he could run the risk of excommunication, of what is called the Seal of Confession—meaning, he can never reveal what he has heard in the confessional. There have even been priests who have died to protect the seal of the confessional, as was in the case of Saint John Nepomucene who would not reveal the sins of the Queen even though the King threatened the priest with death. Indeed Saint John died the martyr’s death, maintaining the seal of the confessional!
6.I WILL GO BACK AND REPEAT THE SAME SINS. Another common temptation that comes from the devil is to convince you that you will never change, that you will go back and commit the same sin over and over and really that you are a true “basket-case” a hopeless renegade! Wrong! Classic moral theology teaches us what is called “The Principle of Graduality”. In lay-terms this means that it is true that we might go back and commit the same sin. However, through the grace of the Sacrament of Confession, we will commit less frequent sins and less grave sins! In other words, gradually, with the help of God’s grace the sin can be conquered.
7.THE PRIEST IS TOO BUSY AND I WILL WASTE HIS TIME! Another trick of the devil, the crafty and wily serpent! On the contrary, one of the primary functions of the priest is the ministry of Reconciliation. Saint Paul teaches: “Be reconciled with God. Now is the day of salvation. Put off the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.” (Romans 13: 13) These were the words that led to the conversion of Saint Augustine as he read these words in the Garden! A priest is ordained to preach the Word of God, celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and to hear confessions and reconcile souls to God. By hearing confessions the priest becomes a better and more holy priest! Go to confession and you will help the priest in his own personal sanctification!
8.I DO NOT KNOW HOW TO CONFESS, OR THE ACT OF CONTRITION??? Lame excuse, the devil behind it! How easy the devil can fill us with useless fears to prevent us from receiving a torrential downpour of graces! Tell the priest your situation and he can help you start and finish! The most important part is confessing your sins, being truly sorry for them, proposing to avoid the near occasion of sin and trusting in the Infinite mercy of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. May the prayer that resounds from our hearts always be JESUS I TRUST IN YOU!!!
9.I AM TOO EMBARRASSED!!! It is interesting how the devil works, his crafty and astute and perverted psychology, but very successful! When the devil tempts us to sin, he takes away our fears and embarrassment. However, once we sin the devil can fill us with so much fear that he actually paralyzes us so that we never make it to the Confessional and therefore become slaves of our sins! Saint Philip Neri was able to actually see the “devil of embarrassment” that prevented souls from receiving the abundant graces of the Sacrament of Confession.
10. I CAN CONFESS DIRECTLY TO GOD, WHY THE PRIEST??? This too is a typical and frequent tactic of the enemy, the tempter, the liar and murderer from the beginning, the devil!(Jn. 8) However, we know as Catholics that Jesus chose priests as the representatives of Christ, the channels of grace and instruments of reconciliation. This Jesus actually did, instituting the Sacrament of Confession, that first Easter Sunday night. The Apostles were in the Upper Room, paralyzed by fear and Jesus came through the wall and said: “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you. And when He said this, He breathed on them and said to them: Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” (John 20:21-23) Therefore, to be forgiven mortal sins, Jesus instituted the Church and the Sacrament of His forgiveness a mercy to forgive sins and reconcile us to His loving and merciful Heart!
In conclusion, all of us have our fears, our doubts. All of us have many GHOSTS that appear in our lives to paralyze us from approaching the merciful and love Jesus. The worst of all sins is that or LACK OF TRUST in the Infinite MERCY of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Why not overcome the devil of FEAR right now and make the best confession in your life. Jesus invites you right now to trust and not to fear: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
A bath. A luxurious, warm, sweet-smelling bath is what you had been craving for the better part of a week. Unfortunately there were no baths matching that description on your journey so far so you would have to make do with a nearby lake.
I hadn’t see the boys in several months, it hurt. Ripped me
apart daily, and yet it surprises me at the same time. I have been hunting solo
since I came to the US, 6 years ago. All that time on my own, bar a short stint
with the brothers, and yet I forgot just how much I craved companionship. They
had sent messages, trying to get me to come back to the bunker. Dean had left
messages on my phone, both drunk and sober. Some pleading, some demanding. I
always replied, via text, so he couldn’t hear just how much it was breaking me
to pieces. Sorry, but I’m good.
I spent my days hunting or crying. Either seemed an
appropriate use of time. If neither option was available, either because there
was no job or I had ran out of tears, I searched for the next job. The next one
to take my anger out on. Tonight was one of those nights, I scanned the papers
online, searching for a new case. Finding one in downtown Denver, several
people had died in the same area, one got run over by their own car, and
another drown in their shower. The third had a window collapse on them whilst
they lent out. It looked like a witch’s case. I decided to head out, leave my
Dallas apartment and take a look. I went to grab the book off my shelf, one on
the history of the occult and reversing hex’s and spells. Only to realise I had
lent it to Sam. Well, Crap! It looked
like I was going to be meeting up with the Winchesters sooner than I thought.
It was a 7 hour drive to the bunker. If I was lucky the boys would be on a
hunt, I could sneak in, grab it and leave.
Packing up my gear, I head out. Climbing into my car, I sighed I missed my
Dodge Charger, but I didn’t have the guts to go get it. So I got another car a
Nissan skyline. Well, I’d won it actually in a race. But still beggars can’t be
choosers. The midnight blue paint works shone in the sun.
I arrived at the bunker about 9pm. If all went well, I would
be out in 10 minutes. I knocked, seemed the right thing to do given the circumstances.
For a second I was hopeful, that the silence meant the boys were on a hunt, but
that disappeared the second the door opened.
He looked like crap, although I knew there was no way I
looked better. The surprise in his face obvious.
‘Hey, Dean’ I said quietly.
‘Y/N’ he whispered, almost not believing it was me. I
nodded, really not knowing what else to do. A smile rose on his face, tears
threatening his eyes. He wrapped me in a hug, squishing my body.
‘Ouch, careful’ I gasped. He pulled back sharply, concern
and worry filling his eyes. ‘I’m ok, honestly just a bit sore from a run in
with a vampire. Damn thing was strong. Took a bit to take him down and convince
him I wasn’t a chew toy or punching bag.’ I gave a small smile to show it was
okay. But it didn’t ease his reaction.
‘How are you?’ I ask. Dean shook his head, running a hand
through his hair.
‘Alive.’ He said, a little too curtly.
‘Right. Well, I won’t take up a lot of time. I just wanted
to grab a book I lent Sam. I think I may need it.’ Dean just stood there
looking at me. It made me uncomfortable. I waited several minutes.
‘Please.’ I requested, just above a whisper. He stepped
aside, letting me in. ‘Thanks.’
I walked down the stairs to find Sam in the
library. He looked up as I entered. Jumping from his seat to wrap me in a hug.
‘OUCH!’ I cried, a lot louder than I should have. The
bruising on my ribs and side was worse than I thought. Sam jumped back like I
had stabbed him.
‘Sorry,’ I said ‘vamp fight, still a bit sore.’ I sighed. He
nodded, concerned. “Ah, I just stopped in to pick up that occult and witchcraft
‘The one with reversing hexes?’ he asked, concerning
‘Yes, that one.’ I answered, seeing his face I added, ‘It’s
not for me, but I may need it where I am headed.’ I smiled.
‘You’re not in the condition to take on a witch.’ Dean said
softly from behind me. I turned a smiled gently.
‘I’ll be fine. It will be another day at least before I get
there. If I play it right, I can hopefully deal with this with minimal contact.’
‘I’m with Dean on this one.’ Sam said, holding the book I
was after. I held my hand out but he refused to give it to me.
‘Sam.’ I warned.
‘Why don’t we come with you?’ Sam suggested. I looked at
Dean, to be near him again would be great. To have him continue to think the
worst of me I can’t handle.
‘I don’t think that’s a good idea.’ I said, holding my hand
out again. He refused again to hand it over.
‘Don’t make me kick your arse!’ I warned
‘How the hell are you going to manage that?’ Dean growled,
his voice raising, ‘You can’t even handle being hugged.’
‘Piss off Dean.’ I threw back. ‘I have managed alone these
past few months, fighting whilst injured. It’s not the first time and it won’t
be the last. Besides they are not that bad!’ Dean stomped over to me, I
panicked for a second freezing on my spot. He lifted the hem of my long sleeved
shirt up revealing the extent of my injuries. Deep black, blue and purple
covered my ribs, sides and part of my stomach. The boys gasped.
‘Nothing is damaged or broken. It’s just bad swelling and
bruising. It will take a while to go away.’ I said, walking to Sam and trying
to snatch my book, but he held it above my head. Given its height I didn’t even
bother jumping for it. I considered knocking him on his arse, but with both
Winchesters there, one of them way bound to stop me.
‘Sam, please give me my book.’ I sighed
‘Then what?’ Dean asked
‘Then I leave. Things go back to normal.’
‘That wasn’t normal.’ Sam said, eyeing Dean, causing him to
look away momentarily.
‘Please.’ I pleaded. I just wanted out, to leave before this
got any worse.
‘Only if we can come and help.’
‘ARGH!” I cried ‘You know what! Stick the damn book where
the sun don’t shine. I’ll make do without it.’ I turned to walk out when Dean
grabbed my forearm, causing me to wince. He looked at my face, then at my arm. He
pulled my sleeve up, revealing my strapping. His face, exposed his heart
breaking at my injuries. He gently turned my arm over.
‘Knife’ I said simply. ‘It’s stitched, and fine.’
‘Y/N’ He pleaded. ‘Don’t make me leave you alone again. I
can’t do it, it broke me last time. Worse now that I see what’s happened. I
wasn’t there to help, to keep you safe.’
‘I’m not your responsibility Dean, I never was’ I sighed.
‘You have more important things to worry about.’
‘Like?’ he questioned.
‘How about Sam? Or Adam? Have you found a way to get him out
the pit yet?’ I snapped. Guilt washed over his face. I felt bad, I had over
stepped the mark. I know Adam is a sore spot.
‘Look’ I sighed. ‘I didn’t come for a lecturer or help. I
didn’t even want to come. I didn’t want to bring back bad memories. Or make
things worse.’ I dropped my head. I
looked at my watch, I still had 6 hours to drive to get to Denver. I had
planned on sleeping in my car part way.
‘Where’s the hunt?’ Sam asked ‘How far away?’
‘A few hours.’ I stated.
‘Stay tonight,’ Dean suggested ‘leave tomorrow once you have
slept. We can sort the rest out tomorrow. Either way one way we are coming, be
it with you or behind you. You know that. But regardless we would all feel
better with some sleep.’ I sighed, he was right.
‘Fine.’ I grumbled. ‘Thank you.’ I looked to the door. ‘Can
I put my car in the garage?’
‘Of course. Where’s the keys, I’ll do it, you sit down.’ Sam
said. I handed him the keys and went to the viewing room and sunk into the
couch. I had to admit, I missed this. Dean grabbed me a coke and came and sat
‘What’s the case?’ he asked, I explained what I had found.
He agreed it looked like witches. He wasn’t happy, apparently he hates them.
Sam walked in,
‘WOW that car is amazing. Where did you get it?’ He quizzed,
rather happily. Dean looked confused.
‘Nissan skyline.’ I filled him in. ‘Miami, won it on a slips
race.’ I smirked. Dean’s eyes grew wide. ‘Told you I can handle a stick
Winchester.’ I muttered laying my head back. I caught his face before I closed
my eyes, a smile played on his lips. We then spent time discussing the hunts of
the past few months.
After a couple of hours I got up to head to bed. I opened my
door, my room was still my room. However, my bed had been slept in.
‘I missed you.’ Dean said coming up behind me. His breath in
my ear. I gasped at the familiarity of it and the wanting it surged in me.
'So, which goldilocks has been sleeping in my bed?’ I
questioned, pointing at the messy sheets. Dean looked guilty. My heart broke.
Really other girls? In my bed? And I was the slut?
‘You know what, I don’t want to know, it’s best if I am
unaware.’ I sighed. Looking at the sheets, debating on whether to strip it or
just throw a blanket over the top and sleep on that. Or just go sleep on the
couch. I went to cupboard and grabbed a blanket.
‘What are you doing?’ Dean asked
‘I’m going to sleep on the couch. I can’t sleep there.’ I
said nodding in the direction of the bed. ‘I just, that’s gross. I hope for
their sake you changed the sheets between each one.’
‘Wait? What?’ he stumbled out, confused ‘You think I had
other girls there? In here?’ he said shocked. ‘I would never, ever do that. It
was me alone, trying to feel close to
you. There’s been no one since you.’
‘There was never a me.’
I pointed out. “We were never together Dean.’ I said quietly, trying to remind
myself, to stop feeling the pain.
‘Y/N’ he said, taking my hand, running his thumb over my knuckles.
‘Since I met you that first time. There has never been anyone else. I may have
flirted and stayed behind at the bar, when you went back to the motel, but I
never did that. There was never anyone else. I couldn’t you were it’ I looked
away, trying to gather myself before speaking,
‘And yet despite all that, you still think I slut around. When was the last time I
flirted and stayed behind for a guy at a bar?’ I asked. ‘I may tease you by
saying I will, but when have I? The only one I ever showed an interest in was
you.’ Guilt washed over his features. He took a moment to compose himself.
‘Y/N’ he started again.
‘Don’t.’ I warned, knowing I couldn’t handle hearing it now.
‘Don’t make this conversation happen now, don’t start what can’t be finished. We
are better off how things are, maybe eventually friends. But nothing more.’
‘Do you honestly believe that?’ He asked stepping closer,
bringing his lips down, he kissed me. My whole body ignited. Every sense I had
tried to fight down, came on high alert. Kissing him back was involuntarily. I
tried not to but couldn’t stop it. His hands moved around my waist, gently
pulling me in. I heard Sam’s door closed and managed to get a hold of myself,
pushing him away and out my room.
‘Sorry Dean, but despite it all, yes I believe that.’ I
struggled to get the words out, trying to make them as convincing as possible,
tears flowing down my face. I quickly shut and locked my door.
‘Y/N?…. Y/N?’ He called knocking on the door, ‘Please?’ he
pleaded. He eventually left. I cried, curling up on my bed. My phone went off,
it was a text message from Dean. I almost didn’t read it, but I felt ignoring
it was rude, and I was the sort of person who hated being rude. Especially when
it wasn’t necessary. You’re stubborn, you
drive me crazy, you make me weak at the knees, you have the power to destroy me
in a single moment and yet you make me a better person. I am stronger with you.
We are better together.I’ll prove it,
just give me a chance. I cried some
more before replying. You have this case,
after that, I’m back on my own. I went and washed my face, hearing my phone
I went back in Game On! He sent, I
couldn’t help but laugh. Challenge
accepted. I sent back.