God's word in today's world

Temptations everywhere

A friend described Jan’s life (not his real name) as follows:desire

Jan’s not doing well, because his wife cheated on him with an upstanding person in the next neighbourhood. His wife is, or was, an upstanding person too. But desire won.

She had changed completely and tried to find reasons to divorce him. You can say it’s only human.

While the two VIPs were busy fooling around, the people related to them were left confused, alone and hurt. The children were confused and hurt. Jan was left abandoned and hurt. Friends and part of the community were left with loads of question marks. The damage was irreversible.

My friend said they were all waiting with open arms to forgive them if they were willing to admit their guilt and return. But they can’t.

Probably too much desire.

It’s a shame, isn’t it? It’s a shame that upstanding people allow desires to overtake them. It’s a shame that desires blind you so much that you cannot see their impact on the people around you. It’s a shame that desires mess with your head so much that you can’t even realise that it’s you who’s playing on the wrong side.

Desires are a dormant darkness in all people’s lives, including Christians. We think we’re in control all the time. We think we can resist any attack from the darkness, because we’re in control. These two probably thought so too.

Only to take the wrong turn at the next offramp and land on a road littered with desires. And before we know it, we open a door and hug the desire tightly.

It can happen to anyone. With upstanding people and not upstanding people. With young people and even with old people. With young children of God and with those who’ve already walked a long way with the Holy Spirit.

Therefore, this warning and command: 14-15Don’t lazily slip back into those old grooves of evil, doing just what you feel like doing. You didn’t know any better then; you do now. As obedient children, let yourselves be pulled into a way of life shaped by God’s life …

Look closely at what these verses say. Obedient children are not free from desires. The day we became children of God, our desires didn’t die never to bother us again. No, unfortunately, wrong desires are still as awake and alert after our conversion as they were before our conversion.

Realise it. Watch out for it. Stand up to it. Prepare yourself. I suspect that’s what the upstanding people didn’t do and didn’t see coming.

Let’s not fall into the same trap.

1 Peter 1:13-16

What desires still prey on you?
Where should you stand guard?
How do you prevent this from becoming a reality?

Father, I realise that my desires aren’t dead. I realise I have to stand guard every moment of the day and night to make sure I don’t open the door for them. I struggle a lot sometimes. Holy Spirit, help me to be sensitive and obedient to Your voice. I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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