Breakdown or Breakthrough?

There are certain sins and temptations that take all the strength you can muster. You push them out of your mind one minute, only to see they’re back the next. They’re like a fly in the house—buzzing and darting, landing out of sight, then zooming by again just when you’d forgotten about it.

Sometimes these sinful pulls and attractions will leave for a few days, a few weeks, maybe even months at a time. We think maybe we’ve licked them. But then they show up again. We feel our back stiffen. We’re not confident we can sustain another assault.

But how about looking at it differently this time? The Bible teaches us that temptation is a test. In other words, it’s a signal that God is up to something. A prize awaits on the other side—new spiritual ground, new spiritual muscles. So by leaning hard on the Lord to get us through unscathed, we won’t just be scoring a single, isolated victory; we’ll be letting him inch us closer to opportunities that have been sitting out there all along, just waiting on our obedience.

The Bible says “we must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22). So the next time you find yourself facing one, keep your eyes not only on winning, but on where winning could take you. You already know what losing can cost you. See if that doesn’t give you the toughness to stand strong.

Pray this prayer: Lord, I don’t understand why you allow temptation to be so difficult sometimes. But I’m believing that you have great things in store if I’ll pass this test. Be there to get me through.

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