Tag Archives: temptations

Being Resolute

Several years ago, we were in the hospital as my mom was dying. The doctor brought the whole family into a room and explained the seriousness of her problem. He told us there was nothing more they could do, and then he talked about hospice care. After he left, my dad kept us in the room. He said, “I still believe in miracles, but we need to be prepared if God doesn’t answer our prayers the way we want Him to. You need to each determine in your hearts now that you will not be bitter against God if she passes away.” I thought it was an odd thing for him to tell us until she passed away and bitterness tried to creep in.

Determining what you’re going to do ahead of time is critical. When temptation comes, it’s too late to decide what you’re going to do. Unless you’ve determined in your heart how you’re going to handle it, we usually end up succumbing to it. You can’t just think, “Oh, I’ll never fall for that.” You need to determine in your heart what you will do and say in times of temptation. Jesus had determined to use the Word of God. We on,y have three of Hos temptations recorded in Scripture, but we have His responses too. Each time He was able to fight temptation with knowing what God’s Word says. The Psalmist said that if we will hide His Word in our hearts, it will Nelly us not to sin.

Psalm 119:112 says, “I have determined in my heart to obey whatever you say, fully and forever!” (TPT) That’s a great thing to determine, but it only works if you’ve spent time in God’s Word to know what He says and if you’ve determined ahead of time. Each of us will face various temptations for the rest of our lives to hurt our relationship with God. When you made a commitment to Christ, you committed to following Him for the rest of your life. Shouldn’t you also commit to obeying everything He says? God’s love language is obedience. If you haven’t done so, determine today that you will obey Him for the rest of your life and that you won’t give into to temptation.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

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Trials, tests and temptations

James 1:2 has always challenged me. It says that we should be joyful when we are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations. If you are like me, joy is not your first response to being tried or tempted. I usually take the victim mentality and try to get out of it ASAP.

Trials, tests and temptations make us better and prove our faith. They are what makes us stronger. We don’t like them because there is a probability of failure and that often occurs. Failure is not the end. It provides an opportunity to learn and to grow. Most people quit after failing once because they don’t see the opportunity that has shown itself for them to get back up and learn a new way.

This scripture says that trials, tests and temptations produce 3 things:

1. Endurance

Endurance gives us the strength to continue beyond what we think we can. When we constantly push ourselves, we in erase our endurance. Christianity is not a sprint but a marathon. There will be highs and lows, leaks and valleys that you will go through. There will be times of plenty and times of drought. Being prepared for the valleys and the droughts is what will keep you going.

Paul recognized that he had not yet attained, but he pressed on. That pressing on is what we have to do as Christians. On those days where your prayers seem to fall to the ground, where your faith seems small and when you’re angry at God, you must press on. Don’t allow your dry season to interfere with your relationship with God. Allow it to make it stronger by pressing on.

2. Steadfastness

This is having an unwavering resolution and a fixed direction. You are not easily deterred. Having these qualities in your faith and life are necessary to continuing the course. The world is there to distract you and to keep you from your purpose or calling. It constantly wants to pull you away from the things of God and turn you aside.

Recognize where you are tempted and stay away from those situations. Go the long way around if it means you will avoid temptation that can keep you from your purpose. Take a look at your life, see where you’ve gotten off course in the past, know what caused it and avoid it in the future to the best of your ability. Your fixed direction is heaven. Keep your eyes ahead and keep moving.

3. Patience

This is the quality of being able to have a steady perseverance even in trying situations. A lack of patience causes us to make rash decisions based on emotion which we later regret. We are to think clearly and exercise self control according to I Peter 1:13. We are not to fly off the handle or to make rash decisions.
We’ve all prayed for patience and then faced difficult situations. We faced them because patience is not given, it’s earned. You must go through difficult times to have this fruit produced. The end result is that you can take anything that comes your way with grace and handle it with dignity.

If you are being tried, tested or tempted don’t be upset and take on a victim mentality. Be happy that you are growing and producing endurance, steadfastness and patience. I know it may not be what you think you need right now, but the end result is worth the temporary pain.

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