To add to the testimonial regarding "The movie theater up in heaven
," I too think like that when it comes to fighting the ultimate fight against my yezter hara. I recently installed a nanny cam in my house which saves clips on a cloud, and I sometimes watch myself learning in my kitchen, and I am able to visualize what that video of me living my life would look like.
I always think that after 120 I want to sit back and enjoy the video without being ashamed of certain portions, wishing it didn't happen. If I'm faced with a challenge, I try to think what would the video look like and would I be happy with it.
With regard to keeping the fight going despite falling, major kudos and keep up the great work and the conviction. In the Sefer "Veha'er Eineinu
," which I highly recommend to anyone struggling with addiction or just struggling to improve their shemiras einayim, the author quotes from Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach zt"l that the mere desire to be better in this area, without more, is a tremendous zechus and HaShem rewards us for that. The Sefer also quotes from the Steipler Gaon zt"l that if, after a long battle with the yetzer hara, we eventually fall, it is not all for naught because all those moments that we kept up a fight is a tremendous zechus and mitzvah and cannot be overlooked. One of the tactics that the yetzer hara employs is to focus only on the end game and if we fell it was a failure and ignore the struggle and the whole battle which is the farthest from the truth. With regard to the phrase we state in the hadran upon making a siyum "anu ameilim v'heim ameilim, anu ameilim umikablim schar viheim ameilim v'einam milablim schar," the Chofetz Chaim famously asked why do we say that goyim don't get schar for their work, we see they do, if they build something and sell it for a profit, they get schar. The Chofetz Chaim beautifully answered that the difference is that with goyim, the schar is only upon success and completing the task at hand, however, with Judaism, the schar is from the toil and work itself regardless of the outcome. That statement could not be more true here. The schar is on the toiling regardless as to the ultimate outcome (that isn't to say Chas vishalom that the outcome is not of utmost importance but the struggle is incredibly valuable as well). The Sefer "Veha'er Eineinu" also notes that in fighting the yetzer hara we have to consider ourselves as a hired worker and not the owner of a store. A hired worker is salaried and gets paid regardless as to the success of the business; however, the owner's salary is directly tied to the success of the business. So too here, we are salaried workers and HaShem pays us for our work and not just for the ultimate success.
Thank you GYE for the daily emails! I get tremendous chizuk from each of them and from all the amazing people who contribute and write about their own personal battles. GYE together with all the members are making an unbelievable kidush HaShem and, hopefully, our collective work will make it easier for those who are still actively struggling and have yet to see the light of GYE and addiction recovery.