Every morning you wake up and enter an arena filled with temptations. One by one they will come at you from various sources and directions. The world will try to tempt you into believing that you should come first and your family and, even God, are second. Satan will attempt to get you to doubt the goodness and wisdom of God. And even your own heart will betray you (James 1:14), tempting you to go your own way and pursue selfishness instead of holding firm to the truths set before you in God’s perfect word.
Whether it’s complaining or laziness, lying or anger, gossip or murder, we all face temptations that are grievous and devastating in their own way.
And so we need to learn to fight. We need to learn how to resist its call and stand up under its allure. Here are three ways to battle our temptations.
All too often a temptation will seemingly jump at us out of nowhere. You were calm and joyful one minute and the next you are yelling harsh words at the kids. How did this happen? It might be helpful if we asked ourselves questions like, “what temptations do I struggle with the most?” and “when do these temptations try to attack?”
We also need to be aware of the price tag each temptation comes with.
Satan gives Adam an apple, and takes away Paradise. Therefore in all temptations let us consider not what he offers, but what we shall lose.
With every temptation that we fail to resist we lose something. Look at the temptations that you struggle with and figure out what you lose whenever you give in. Sometimes the damage won’t be seen for a while but there will always be some kind of fall out.
I’m a homebody and my favorite thing about a big snowstorm is that I can’t go anywhere. Woohoo! This means I can stay in my PJ’s and enjoy a very slow day.
This is not acceptable when it comes to overcoming our temptations. We cannot lounge around in our spiritual yoga pants. We have to get dressed, and our clothing of choice must be armor. In Ephesians 6 we can read all about this armor that the Lord has given to us to wear. It might seem cumbersome and heavy, but fighting temptation is serious and as warriors of God we must always be ready or our temptations will overcome us.
In heaven we shall appear, not in armor, but in robes of glory. But here these are to be worn night and day; we must talk, work and sleep in them, or else we are not true soldiers of Christ.
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
1 Corinthians 10:13
We love this verse, don’t we? We take great comfort in hearing that, in our temptations, God will always provide a way for us to endure it. We do not have to give in.
Jesus did not give into his temptations (Lk 4) but fought them with truth.
And because Jesus overcame his temptations we can overcome ours because Jesus is with us, in us and for us. HE is the way of escape that Paul talks about in 1 Corinthians 10:13. Jesus is the reason we are able to endure what the world, the devil, and our own hearts throw at us.
So next time you are struggling with a particular temptation, ask yourself, “what is the temptation offering me, and what will I lose if I give in?” Then remember that you can have victory over your temptations if you go to your savior for wisdom and strength.
Every day is a day to fight. There is an army of temptations lined up to come at you. You must be ready, aware of the attack. You need to be dressed in armor to fend off the assault and fight for your life. You must trust in Christ who has overcome sin and gives you the strength to overcome as well.