Monday, August 22, 2011

Turning Around In Temptation


Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
James 4:7

In which Abby gets a tad bit serious.

For starters, dear fellow believers in Christ to whom this post is addressed, I'm going say this: I'm not perfect. Very much not. In fact, I'm not all that good, either. 

The only thing good about me is my Savior who covered me with His blood- and covers me with His grace. 

Amen? Amen.

And until Heaven, none of us in the body of Christ are going to be anywhere near perfect. We are working out our salvation with fear and trembling ;)

We purpose not to fall into sin. We try to keep our ways pure. We want to walk in the ways of righteousness and to be as our name describes us: Christians. Little Christs.

But what do you when you do fall into sin? 

The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak, I know. I understand. And I can guarantee you the devil is going to keep trying to get a hold of you and tempt you until he finds something that you would fall for.

When he does it, it may not even seem like a very "bad" sin at first. It often starts out small- as a simple, seemingly harmless thought. But what happens is those thoughts grow- and turn into actions. Then, if the sin goes unchecked you're doing things you shouldn't be doing, looking at things you ought not- and suddenly you're up to your knees or shoulders or ears in sin, and you wonder, how on earth did I get here?

But we don't want things to get that far, do we? (Even if it does, though, know that God does not love you any less, you hear me? Confess and accept His forgiveness and turn around and then walk the right way and let Him lead you- don't fall into the lie that God won't have you back. He died for you while you were still a sinner!)

Anyway. We want to turn that which the Enemy is using to trip us up to draw closer to Christ. So when you find yourself being tripped up by sin- what do you do to render those attacks made by the enemy not only useless, but counterproductive to his purpose?

Simple. Prayer.

And it's sadly funny but more so, convicting: prayer is the easiest, most un-inconviencing (woh) thing in the world to do- and yet it's the hardest thing for us to do. I mean, truly, we can be totally slack about praying- or we try and suddenly are very tired and just don't feel like exerting the energy to do it. 

Why?

Might I suggest it's because it's so important?

"Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."
1 Thessalonians 5:17-18

Now, this post may not even concern you right now. Maybe you are walking close and well with your Lord and things are cool. If so, I just encourage you and say, Keep running the race and fighting the good fight.

But if you are struggling and are fraught with temptations and trials, whatever it may be, might I encourage you by saying that you can be victorious? 

If the Deceiver has already caused you to fall, then don't keep that burden any more. Confess it to the Lord- right now. It may be painful but I promise it takes all the power out of whatever foothold Satan's got on you.

If it's a temptation that keeps coming back- particularly those type of sins that start in the thought life-  make this a reflex for yourself:

Whenever you start thinking something you shouldn't, start praying for other people. 

If your particular temptation happens to be sensual, then for goodness sake's start praying for the marriages around you. (Or your own marriage if you happen to be married.) 

If it happens to be foul language that you are struggling with, whenever you are tempted to employ those words check yourself and praise ten characteristics of God. 

Whatever it is, find something to pray about, someone to pray for, and then the enemy will discover that not only has his ploy become nullified, it's become a tool, a sword, against him. And he will leave for a time. 

I'm sorry, this may have seemed pretty out of the blue but this is something that has just been rather prevalent in my life and thus, on my heart.

Anyway, wherever you are in your walk right now, may you draw ever closer to Him and may He bless you abundantly.

7 comments:

Hannah Joy said...

Thanks for the really great post.
It reminded me of this verse (Hebrews 12:1): "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us."

'Cause it is a race. A race of endurance, and yet, we still fall.

I've been thinking about a lot about my walk with God. Things I'll probably screw up if I say, but I will try. One word sums it up practically, but that one word is really, really big. Hope.

I hope for things to be in heaven. I hope for Jesus coming in all His glory. I hope that I will be welcomed in his house.

What have we humans if not hope? We have not faith, or mountains would be moving. We have not endurance, or we wouldn't keep falling.

Songs have filled me up lately. "Farther Along" by Josh Garrels is a really good one. In fact, here's a link to listen to the whole thing for free:

http://joshgarrels.bandcamp.com/track/farther-along

That one is so powerful, and dripping with references to the Bible. All of his are, really. Great artist.

And then I just finished listening to Steven Curtis Chapman's Beauty Will Rise CD. Wow. Just wow.

"Out of these ashes/Beauty will rise!"

Oops. I just wrote a really long comment, in which I changed the subject and ran off on a rabbit trail. Sorry! Great post, Abby. Great, great post. Danke!

The Director said...

Aw, thank YOU, Hannah! You are such an encouragement to me- and don't even apologize for the long comment, it's great ;)

Hannah Joy said...

You're so sweet. I can just imagine what your actual reaction was: "OH NO!!!! HANNAH JOY POSTED." *Tearing out hair* ;-)

The Director said...

Lie. :D

Kayla said...

Amen! Good post. Thanks for the encouragement!

Anonymous said...

"most un-inconviencing" - love that

Anonymous said...

This really was a super awesome and insightful post, Director! Thanks!

-'Slippers