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The Illusion of Standing Firm

Restling with Sin

 “So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted,he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthian 10:12-14

How do you stand in front of temptation?  This is a question I have been asking myself.  Just when I thought I was standing firm, temptation has reared its head.  Instead of standing firm, I realize I was self righteous.  Yet although I am facing temptation and the struggle becomes more intense daily, so is my life line of resistance.

The correlation between temptation and our life line of resistance is always equal.  Both are forces that continually oppose one another; just as we are tempted, God provides a way out.  Yet one of the things I am learning once again is that just because I may fall, that doesn’t mean that God has abandoned me in my fall.  God is faithful and His desire is to see us in victory.  He knows that in our own flesh, we cannot resist temptation.  The key part of this scripture is not the fact that we will be tempted (notice it says when we are tempted, not if).  The key part is God’s actions during our temptation.  First, He knows what we can bear and has prohibited any more than that.  Secondly, and more importantly, He provides a means for us to escape our temptation.  That means when we are boxed in with no way out, when we can’t see how to move beyond the situation, God has already thrown us the key to the box and the life line to bear whatever we face.

As I write these words, I am reminded of this: I don’t face my temptation alone and God is bigger than my temptation.  I draw comfort from that.  May you too as well.