Temptations can be anything and anywhere. They can sneak up on you, deceiving your mind into thinking they’re quite innocent, until you realize they really aren’t, but by then it’s too late. Sometimes they can be as simple as an unencouraged habit, but they can just as easily turn around and be as severe as a life-changing situation. Lies, deceit, bitterness, slacking off, breaking promises, mentally or physically harming yourself in any way, the list goes on and on, and it all seems just so easy.
“Just one time wouldn’t hurt, right?”
“Oh, I’ve only done it once before, I can let myself do it again.”
“Eh, it hasn’t happened that many times, and it’s not like I’m going to make it a habit or anything.”
The thing with temptations, is they’re constantly nagging you, eating away at your conscience. And if you give into them enough times? They’ll devour your conscience completely until there’s nothing holding you back. It may not seem that big of a deal at first, but you never know when it might snap back at you, whether it’s two days or two decades from now.
But you know what Christ says about that?
“No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure.” – 1 Corinthians 10:12-13
Wow. So wait, the Lord is testing you? Yeah, He really is. Man is naturally born as faulty, so we are instantly drawn towards deceit and sin. Don’t worry though! God isn’t just some classic bully from school testing to see how much it takes to blow your fuse, because He created you and knows exactly when to stop so you won’t break. Pretty neat, huh? He knows what tests can push you to your exact limit, so that when you do pull through them–and He makes sure that you do–you’re relationship with Him will be stronger than ever.
However, don’t be getting any big ideas where you can just give in to any temptation that comes your way because “If God makes sure I overcome this in the end, I can totally still do it!”
No. Just no.
“As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior.” – 1 Peter 1:14-15
The Lord doesn’t want us to just up and forsake Him and do whatever we want in the hopes of Him saving our butt whenever we get in a pickle. In response to Him handing us the free gift of salvation, He wants a little something in return. Our faith. He wants us to glorify Him in everything we do, so when we are stuck in the middle of a struggle, we have the mindset to keep going and look at the Light at the end of the tunnel. His Light.
“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” – Philippians 4:8
So keep pushing, no matter the size of test, temptation, or struggle, because God has your life in His hands and knows exactly what to do with it. Even if nothing is fixed in this earthly life, we still have something a thousand times better to look forward to. One day everything will be set right, and we will be able to experience the full splendor of Christ in all His glory. We just need to keep our eyes on the finish line and trust that He will see us through to the end.
– suzy –