No matter what year you are in the Gospel for the 1st Sunday of lent talks about Jesus’ fast and temptation by the devil. (This year it’s Luke’s gospel). Lent’s 40 days matches the length of his fast.
What really interesting about the situation is that this is the only explicit direct attack on Christ by the Devil in scripture and it is when Jesus is physically weakest after 40 days of fasting (remember while fully God he was still fully man) that he is tempted by the Devil.
Isn’t that just the way of the Devil, to hit us when we’re down, to whisper in our ears at a time when we are low and promise us better things if we’ll just take a shortcut or two?
Jesus used scripture to counter Satan and we have his example for us to use in that same situation. It’s the willingness to rely on God and his word at our lowest point (while not forgetting gratitude at the high ones) that makes a world of difference. C.S. Lewis was exactly right when he put these words in the mouth of the infernal creature Screwtape:
Our cause is never more in danger than when a human, no longer desiring, but still intending, to do our Enemy’s will, looks round upon a universe from which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, and asks why he has been forsaken, and still obeys.Screwtape 8
May we learn during at the start of Lent that Satan can always be resisted and resolve to defeat him this day.