What I call the devil words describe the subtle and sometimes not so subtle ways that the adversary influences our lives. Conveniently, they all start with the letter d. You probably know the d words better than you realize.
One of the first of these is distraction. Any way he can, Satan tries to get our attention off of holy things and on to mundane and unholy things. Distractions can get us out of tune with the music of heaven.
It seems that distraction is where the devil begins his work. It might be as simple as the demands of a job, a TV show, or a new boyfriend. It might be something like blaming another person for a problem you are having, withholding forgiveness and holding a grudge, working on Sunday, not paying our tithing, or being upset with a priesthood leader. What Satan tells us is only a harmless diversion at first can work us into delirium—for example, pornography can rapidly work its way under our skin and become a sexual addiction. Tame distractions can quickly become more severe and debilitating ones, even deadly distractions.
Putting distractions in perspective and replacing some of our activities with better, more meaningful ones can help us keep distractions to a minimum. Nothing keeps distraction at bay like good habits, habits such as sincere daily prayer, meaningful scripture study, and regular temple attendance. When our lives are anchored with daily habits that fortify us spiritually, distractions lose their hold on us, never developing into a flash flood that can sweep us away from what we hold dear.
Stay tuned for more devil words in upcoming blog entries.