7.21.18 Praise & Prayer Prompt: Temptations

PRAISE & PRAYER PROMPT ••• I have a major sweet tooth, but there’s one dessert I’ll never order in a restaurant…

Anything chocolate.

Don’t get me wrong, I like chocolate just fine…

I’m just not the chocolate fanatic like some people I know (you know who you are!).

But if I’m going to eat chocolate, I’m kind of particular about it.

I don’t care for insanely rich chocolate desserts and it seems like most restaurants do all they can to ramp up the decadence and richness factors of any chocolate they serve.

I’ll stop here…

I have a feeling if I continue, I’m going to have to answer for this opinion in a staff meeting on Tuesday.

We’ll just suffice to say, my sweet-tooth temptation comes in other ways.

I’ve never met a Creme Brûlée I didn’t like…

And I love pound cake…

Strawberry shortcake…

Anything with caramel…

Cherry or pecan pie…

I’m so glad words don’t have calories…

I haven’t had breakfast yet.

If you have a sweet tooth, you know certain desserts are incredible temptations for you.

And while I don’t really understand non-sweet-tooth people, I’m sure you have your own food cravings.

I’ve never been one to crave potato chips for instance, but maybe you have a favorite kind that you can hardly resist.

We all suffer from some form(s) of temptation.

It’s not always food.

And just as our taste buds have preferences, we have particular sins and temptations we’re more drawn to than others.

James 1:14 says, “Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.”

One could argue that this could be the signature verse for a Christian weight loss group.

But in all seriousness, this is a very serious issue.

I may not face the same temptations you face and vice versa.

But we have to be diligently aware of where our personal stumbling blocks are.

And that’s challenging because we don’t always see ourselves accurately.

Jesus even acknowledged mankind’s ability to be ignorant of our own shortcomings (Matthew 7:3, “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own?”)

By immersing ourselves in God’s word and through prayer, we can ask the Holy Spirit to show us how to avoid the temptation pitfalls that lead us down the road of sin.

And He’s promised to help us.

In 1 Corinthians 10:13, it says, “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”

No matter what your particular brand of sin, those who have trusted in God can trust that He will enable us to overcome our temptations.

Galatians 5:16 gives us these comforting words, “So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves.”

Just as we don’t have to let past choices define our future, we don’t have to remain victims to temptations.

Jesus died to free us from sin.

If we’ve accepted Christ, He’s empowered us to escape it.

Of course, we’ll still make mistakes.

But as my health coach Liz keeps reminding me, a single bad choice doesn’t mean we give up.

It just means we need to ask for forgiveness, stand back up, and move forward.

Today, as you pray, thank Jesus for dying to set us free from sin.

And thank the Holy Spirit for being with us, and His constant redirection from the temptations we face.

Ask Him to keep you focused on God’s word and in constant prayer so you can avoid temptation.

And pray for clarity…

If there’s an area of sin in your life that you may not even be consciously aware of.

Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal that to you so you can overcome it with His help.

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