Saturday, August 22, 2009

It's not the bait, it's the bite

This is one of those days when the exact words I needed to read appeared to me. I have been struggling with a severe case of temptation in an area of my life that I thought I had a grip on.

When this temptation is dormant, I have zero doubt that I am doing the right thing by avoiding it. Actually, I don't even think about it. When the temptation flares up, it hits hard. And when it puts itself close enough to touch twenty times in one day, it is nearly unbearable.

But I did bear it. I made it through the night. And in the light of the morning as I sat with my hot coffee and surfed my usual web sites for news and such, I came across this from Pastor Greg Laurie:

God never will give you more than you can handle (see 1 Corinthians 10:13). It may not feel that way in the moment, because the fact is that when temptation is coming your way, it looks as though what would bring the most happiness would be giving in to it. The reality is that happiness comes from resisting and overcoming temptation. There is the initial euphoria that temptation can bring, but then you discover that what looks so appealing on the outside is actually filled with poison. That is how temptation works.

Read the rest here.

Being tempted by things that are ultimately not good for us is part of life on this earth. Sometimes we handle it well, sometimes we give in and immediately suffer the consequences. And sometimes we give in and there don't seem to be any negative consequences. That is the worst scenario, because it just leads to more...and it doesn't take long before what we know is wrong becomes a stronghold and it is nearly impossible to break free.

Do I wish that I was never tempted? Sure. But being tempted isn't the real problem. The real problem doesn't come until I give in. Remember, the worm dancing in the water in front of a fish does not cause him any problems until he takes the bite.