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September 19, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”—James 1:12 (NKJV)
I took my four-year-old daughter with me to run errands. We ended up at a craft store with lots of pretty rocks that captivated my daughter’s attention. As we headed to the car, I noticed something pink held tightly in her hand. “Blesi, what is that in your hand?” I asked.
I looked closer and saw that she had taken a pink rock. We had a little mother-daughter talk about taking things without paying for them, and then returned the rock to the store. We apologized to the manager and headed home.
That evening, I told my husband the story and praised my daughter for returning the rock. My husband asked Blesi what she learned that day. “Well,” she admitted, “I still have the rock.” She reached into her pocket and produced the pink rock.
Temptation seems to be around every corner these days. Solomon said there is nothing new under the sun. Every generation has its unique temptations, but they all stem from the same underlying sin—our desire to satisfy the flesh. The reality is only you can find a way to endure your temptation. Your mother, your spouse, and your pastor can all tell you what you should do. But until you decide you want to resist temptation, it will find you.
I recently read a devotional by Jonathan Cahn in which he references the temptation described in Proverbs 5:8 (NKJV): “Remove your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house.”
The key to resisting temptation is to not go anywhere near the door! If we allow ourselves to flirt with sin by standing on the front porch of temptation, then we are opening ourselves up to the sin. We may think we are stronger than others and can resist, but we are all equally vulnerable to temptation. The best path to follow is the one that takes us away from the door—with temptation only visible in the rear-view mirror—and continually getting smaller as we move farther away.
DIG: Think about the temptations that seem to find you. Do you want to resist them?
DISCOVER: What is the figurative “door” to your temptation? Instead of hanging out on the front porch, flirting with sin, what path should you take to avoid the temptation?
DISPLAY: Decide to resist your temptation.