No wonder Sts. Anthony, Isaac, and others went out into the desert. There is always something to distract us from maintaining our prayers. I haven’t really had any food temptations (yet). But, there are always things to dissuade me from prayer. Being an hour away from any Orthodox Church, I am not going to make it to too many Pre-Sanctified Gifts and Akathist services. With daylight savings time, there is always something to do around the house and gorgeous sunsets to capture on my camera. I am tempted to waste time on soccer rumors and the March Madness tournament. And I tend to get too drowsy to pray Compline as I should. It is only by the grace of God that some of my old demons have not come back to overtake me. But, I am reminded of what happens when an evil spirit has been driven out of a man and he has nothing inside of himself:
Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first (Matthew 12:43-45)
Thus, my aim is to limit, if not eliminate, the things that distract me from my prayer discipline. I can still enjoy time in photography and watching a good game. But, I must constantly and consistently fill myself with the Holy Spirit. Without feasting on spiritual nourishment, I may as well eat a steak & cheese sandwich with fried onions and peppers. If I dwell in distraction, sin will overtake me and make me a monster. If I walk in discipline, I have hope that the Lord will save his unworthy servant.