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The temptations in your life are no different from what
others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the
temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted,
he will show you a way out so that you can endure.
- 1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT
We are confronted with temptation every single day of our lives. Temptation comes in all sizes and all strengths. For instance, imagine you’ve promised your best friend that you’re going to be her accountability partner on her newfound weight-loss adventure. It’s all going great, and you’re motivated to live this new healthier lifestyle, until you walk through the door and find your mom baking your favorite pecan chocolate chip cookies.
In that moment of weakness, you are confronted with a choice. You either: eat the delicious cookie and feel like a crumby friend, or you don’t eat the cookie and miss out on all of its chewy goodness. Seems like a lose-lose situation. However, in these situations, God is challenging us to see the positive side to resisting temptation. Sure, at first it may seem like you will miss out on something sweet, but the reality is, avoiding it has actually put you on track to becoming healthier and achieving your overall goal.
This is a minor example in the field of temptation, but you get the idea. Temptation literally goes back as far as humanity. Eve succumbed to temptation when she chose to eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, thus opening the gateway for knowledge of good and evil. This is when we became aware of sin. No one is immune to temptation, and becoming a Christian doesn’t make temptation easier. The Bible tells us of many accounts of temptation, some where faith in God prevailed, and others where the stronghold of temptation overcame.
Job was faced with great loss, and yet he chose to keep his focus on the Lord, and his obedience was rewarded with an abundance of blessings that exceeded his losses. David however, was considered to be a “man after God’s own heart,” and still he gave into his adulterous temptation when he witnessed Bathsheba bathing.
Satan baits us in to believe that when temptation arises, we have no way out. He feeds us lies that living without the sin, isn’t worth living at all. As Christians, we know that sin is not without consequence. However, as flawed humans, we often manipulate ourselves into believing that the sacrifice through temptation is worth the consequence. We allow our mentality to become so warped in deception that deciphering between right and wrong doesn’t hold the precedence it should in our lives. A sin may seem small and harmless, but when we choose to fuel its growth, it can easily escalate into great turmoil.
This is why it is crucial for us, as Christians, to know the Word of God. When we study the Bible, God gives us numerous accounts of hope to show that no matter what we are tempted with, God has promised us a way out. God’s Word tells us that He will never give us more temptation than we can stand, though my dramatic side wants to beg to differ some days. God is faithful. He does not make promises that He can’t keep. So even on the days when we feel that we are at the end of our rope, God promises that He has equipped us to withstand the full extent of what has fallen upon our shoulders.
I think it’s also fair to mention that temptation is tough, and if there have been instances where you have fallen short, you are not alone. God doesn’t write us off because we fail Him. In fact, that’s the exact reason His Son Jesus was crucified for our sins. Humans are vulnerable, unreliable, faulty creatures. God created us, and He knows that! It’s so important for us to realize that even if we see someone give into temptation, His compassion reaches so much further than hate and guilt. We should lead by example, uplift our neighbors, and be an encouraging factor in why they choose to make better choices in the future. We should choose to love them like Jesus loves us, with an open heart and without condition. This world could always use more of that!
1. What are some of the toughest temptations you struggle with?
2. In your own life, how do you see that God has equipped you to withstand the temptations you face?
Dear God, I come to You with an open heart, believing that You make me strong. Help me to choose the path of righteousness, even when I am faced with adversity. Allow me to be more aware of the escape route that You have provided when temptation comes knocking. I know that I cannot stand alone against the ways of the world, but with You I can do all things. Thank You for accepting my shortcomings and forgiving my faults. Let Your compassion shine through me so that I may be a light and encourage others to know You more. Thank You and I love You, Lord. Amen.
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