Monday, August 15, 2011

Overcoming Temptation :: Part 1

{Written by Bethany Ann}

Carissa sat down on her bed and opened her book to the place she had last marked with a pink silk ribbon. As she started to read she noticed that the content of that chapter was getting inappropriate. Her conscience started to prickle at her mind "Why are you reading this? You know you shouldn't! Your parent and the Lord wouldn't approve!" Will Carissa obey the Holy Spirit?

~*~
     Melissa grabbed the knife and fruit and headed for the cutting board. As she started to wash the peaches and cut off the bright green tops off the strawberries she remembered how she hadn't had her afternoon snack like she normally did. She all the sudden got really hungry and she instantly remembered how flavorful and juicy the fruit was the day before. Her mouth watered and she reached out to grab a strawberry when she remembered how her mother had asked her not to eat any of the fruit before dinner. But she was so hungry! Will Melissa give into this temptation?

~*~

     Rae Lynn was up in her room, and a long time had passed since the sun had gone down. She was trying to get a head start on the next days math test and was studying as well as trying to finish that book. All of the sudden she remembered of her parents wishes for her to go to bed at an early hour. She wonders is she could stay up without her parents knowledge. "It's not like I'm doing something bad with my time! I'm studying for school!" she told herself. "Your doing something productive with you time! What they don't know won't ever hurt them!" she thinks. Will Rae Lynn give in?

~*~

     Jo Ann heard the beep beep beep of the alarm clock. "Time to get up" she tells herself as she pulls her feet off the bed and onto the floor. As she gets ready for her day she puts on her day clothes, brushes her hair and teeth, washes her face and makes her bed. In a hurry to get breakfast due to the growling of her hungry stomach she flies down the brown stairs. As she steps down the middle of the stairs she remembers that she has not yet had her time with Jesus. "Oh, I'll just do it later" she tells herself. "Besides, I'm already half was down the stairs!" she complains. Will Jo Ann listen to the Holy Spirit?

~*~
     Have you ever been tempted in such a way as these girls in the above stories? Well do not feel alone, everyone is tempted! But with the Lord's help we can overcom temptation of the devil and overcome his foolish lies! Temptation can actually be a good thing if we use it for our good. If we can overcome temptations then that will strengthen our faith and the next time we are tempted we will more quickly recognize it as the devil's temptation. However, when we give into his lies then we will not recognize this as a temptation and then the next time we will recognize this as the devil's doings less and less every time. We will also be tearing down our faith as we give into Satan's lies and not find strength from the Lord instead. Dear, girls, we must not give into temptations! Can you think of one thing you are currently struggling with in your faith? Maybe it's obedience or keeping your thoughts pure. What about being kind to others or not gossiping? Well most sins start with temptation! So if we can stop temptations before they get going , then we can stop the chances of us being lead into sin without even knowing it!

     There are two well known Bible stories about two people who were tempted, except there were different outomes due to the persons choices. First, let's look at the well know story of the fall of Eve:

"Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”  The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it." ~Genesis 3:1-6

     Eve was not obeying the Lord, and thus she was punished by her opened eyes among the other punishment brough on later on in the story when God finds that they have disobeyed His commands. Have you noticed how Satan used a tiny bit of truth and mixed it with a lot of things that weren't true to make it look good and true? Yes, it was right that her eyes were opened, but no in the way she though it would be! Satan has a way of getting very sneaky and he will do virtually anything to get you to give into his lies! 

     Now let's look at another story, this time it is the story of Jesus' temptation:

"Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”  Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’” Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him." ~Matthew 4:1-11

     Did you notice how Jesus used Scipture to defent Himself? What a wonderful example of a tried-and-true method to drive the Satan away and tempt you no more! In my favorite book Before You Meet Prince Charming by Sarah Mally, Miss Sarah writes "Try turing every termptation into a prayer! Satan will think twice about tempting you if he knows you will turn it into a prayer!" It is so true and a great way to strengthen your faith as most Christians have many temtpations! :D So pray and ask the Lord for guidence whenever you are being tempted and He will help you! "God will give us aid against the enemy... with God we will gain the victory and he will trample down our enemies" ~Psalm 108:12, 13

Please join us for part two on August 29th as we continue to study the importance, and the knowledge of how to overcome temptations!!

5 Words of Grace:

Miss Rachel Lauren said...

That was such a beautiful post, Miss Bethany! It really opened my mind to a few things.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much Bethney!
I love how you used stories to explain temtation. I am anxious to read your next article!

Anonymous said...

Sorry!
I wrote the above comment!
Emily J.

Carissa said...

Thanks for writing this article. I really enjoy reading your blog.

Carissa Rose

Miriam said...

Thank you so very much for writing this, Miss Bethany! It really spoke to my heart and challenged me!