Megan Evans, Women’s Ministry Director, LHBC
1 Corinthians 10:13 (NLT)
No temptation has come upon you except what is common to humanity. But God is faithful; he will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to bear it.
I love to untangle knots. It’s one of my quirks, and strangely satisfying and relaxing to sit down with a jumbled necklace or string and carefully straighten it. My strategy is always the same: find the way out. I first locate the ends, then I trace them back through the tightened loops while carefully loosening the balled up knot. Then, I gradually lift and pull, releasing and righting each tangle until every last one is free.
The knots of sin are far less enjoyable. Understatement. I think perhaps the word “miserable” would be a better way to describe the entanglement that temptation can lead us into and the layers of trouble it can cause. This is something we all can relate too because, as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians, temptation is common to humanity. Maybe you are in a tangle today or recall the hurtful choices of your past. While it may look different in each of our lives, we have all experienced enticement and the thought and emotion that led us to wrong actions.
But God—these two words are so freeing when our spirit is stuck. Temptation is common, but God is faithful. What an uncommon, set apart life we can live under the care of The Faithful One. Read verse thirteen again. Who does not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able? Who provides the way out of temptation so that you may be able to bear it? Praise God, He will.
There is such a difference between HE and me, but I tend to forget that God’s greatness is my strength in moments of weakness. These areas of temptation lose all power in His might. Do you forget this too? Because temptation is a part of life, sometimes sin squeezes in and just becomes part of who we are rather than a clear standard of who we are not. Common temptation can easily become complacent temptation, and that’s right where the enemy wants us.
Because we will fight our sin nature for the rest of our human life, we are wise to listen to the way Jesus taught us to respond. In the Lord’s prayer, he said we should ask for God’s help to overcome. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one, it says in Matthew 6:13. In other words, God you are faithful, daily show me YOUR way out!
God knows us inside and out and with this intricacy comes His desire for us to grow, refine, and be sanctified. He will lead us in wisdom and discernment of His Holy Spirit. What feels scratchy and unfair at times in the face of temptation, can be viewed as growing pains as we choose to die to self and yield to God’s way instead. There is nothing common about our Amazing God and we are called to join Him in His set-apartness. With this in mind, resisting temptation becomes less of a negative and more of a positive; It is a beautiful invitation to join Christ in His holiness.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Father God, I am weak, but you are strong. You made me and you know my tendencies. By your mighty hand and provision, hour by hour, lead me out of temptation today and into Your safety and freedom. Untangle my heart and make my rough places smooth. In Jesus Name, Amen.
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
Ephesians 2:10- .10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.