Why is temptation so tempting?
Whether it’s the temptation of more ‘prominent’ sin’s like lust or greed or the hidden sins that lurk below the surface like pride and envy, the ever present lure of temptation waits for its moment like a hungry street dog lurking in the shadows waiting to pounce on any crumbs that fall to the ground.
Unfortunately this dog isn’t something that exists in the streets, but lives within our own hearts:
‘Each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire’ – James 1:14 (ESV)
We are all created differently so we battle with different kinds of temptation according to our personality, temperament and circumstances. As for me, it was growing up with thick slabs of home made brown bread I could barely fit in my school lunch box that caused my heart to lust after white bread the moment I left home!
If your anything like me, you can think your the only one. “I’m the only I know who is tempted in this way. There must be something wrong with me”. It’s at this point we can withdraw and isolate ourselves, and although maybe not in a physical sense, we close our hearts to those around us for fear of exposure.
The danger with this is that street dogs are emboldened in the dark. It’s only the light of day that will weaken the dogs resolve and expose it’s schemes. The best antidote to temptation is to bring it to the light, which begins with realising your not the only one:
‘The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience… [but] when you are tempted, [God] will show you a way out’ – 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NLT)
One of the best ways to conquer temptation is to switch on the lights by sharing our struggles with a trusted friend:
‘Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed’ – James 5:16 (NLT)
And if you’ve crossed the line, your never too far from grace:
‘I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father… [Jesus] is the sacrifice that atones for our sins’ – 1 John 2:1-2 (NLT)
You are not alone. Don’t feed the street dogs but expose them by turning on the lights!