Thursday, April 16, 2020

Beat the Beat - Martin Wiles

But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. Genesis 4:7 NLT

No sooner had I locked the door than she gave in.

Our small Chihuahua-terrier mix faces one temptation she can’t seem to control: digging in the trash can. But not when we’re looking. When we leave her alone.

For months after we got our little mutt, we put her in her kennel when we left for a few hours. Then we decided we’d give her a chance by leaving her out. The first few times, she managed to behave herself. Then we came home to torn up paper all over the floor. Back in the kennel she went.

After a while, we gave her another chance. She did well—as long as I remembered to put the trash can out of her reach. One Sunday morning—as we were leaving for church—I forgot to move the trash can. I locked the door, got in the car, and suddenly remembered. I re-entered the house only to find her crouched down with a pitiful look. Beside her was a piece of trash. Her look said, “I’m sorry. I just can’t help myself.”

God gave Cain a warning when he got upset. God didn’t accept his sacrifice because Cain had come with the wrong attitude. His sacrifice would be accepted if he changed his attitude. If not, sin crouched at his door, waiting to control him.

All of us have those areas in which some temptations easily tempt us. What tempts you may have no attraction for me—and vice versus. Satan, however, is clever. He roams about like a hungry lion, experimenting with our lives, testing our resolve to obey God, learning just what we easily give in to. When he discovers it, he uses it regularly to trip us up, beginning by having us think about it. He knows if we ponder on it long enough we’ll act.

But God is more powerful than our enemy. He promises not to let any temptation come that’s stronger than our ability—with His help—to overcome. Christ in us gives us the strength to face and defeat all temptation, just as Jesus did in the wilderness. Our little dog hasn’t learned yet to beat the beat of temptation—and sometimes it takes me a while too—but we can overcome.

God is stronger than the beat of any temptation you’ll face. Ask, and He will show you the way out.

Prayer: Father, we believe You are more powerful than any temptation we face.

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