Today we have a guest post from a fellow blogger Bri Mcswain. Bri is the home school mother of two children, Chloe 4, and Brennan 1. She has been married almost 3 years to her husband Sean. In her free time she likes to blog and spend time with her family. She resides in Ohio with her family.
( The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views held by this blog and are solely the work and beliefs of the author.)
“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that The Lord has promised to those who love him. When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they’re dragged away by their own evil desires and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. Don’t s deceived, my dear brothers and sisters.” James 1:12-16
When I first surface read these verses I had to admit I was confused. Why would God allow temptation if He can’t be tempted, or isn’t the one who tempts us? But as I kept reading and dug further into the meaning of these verses, it started to make more sense, as things usually do.
God gives mankind free will. Period. God isn’t a tyrant who makes us do what He wants. If that were the case, none of us would want to serve God freely. However, since we do have free will, this is why there’s temptation. We’re free to take temptations bait. It’s a matter of will we or not. When temptation comes along, the court room of heaven is in session. God wants to know where your heart is and if you’re serious about serving him.
Our own desires come up against us daily. Yes, I said daily. That’s why as believers we have to be diligent in suppressing the flesh to make our spirits strong against temptations. For example, my flesh hates it when I work out. If I listened to my flesh all the time, I would never workout, or if I did, I would quit in the middle of my hour long workout. I always have to have the mindset that I’m in a trial and God is proving me, testing my endurance. This goes for any temptation. We have to have the mindset of God testing us so we can suppress the flesh.
In verse 14, the word “enticed” means “lured away from under the rock.” It’s a hunter and fishermen’s term. The enemy knows what our flesh likes and will use that to tempt us. He wants us out from under God’s will. The Enemy will literally do anything to keep you from fulfilling God’s will for your life.
That’s why it’s so important to recognize our weaknesses, so when temptation does come we can say, “No, I’m staying in God’s will for my life and I will not destroy my influence and my relationship with my God.”
We can combat temptations through spiritual weapons such as prayer, memorizing scripture, and just reminding ourselves of God’s work in our life! Once we give into temptation though we risk losing our influence, our anointing leaving and God’s will departing from our lives. God can’t use us if we make agreement with our fleshly desires.
Let’s all be diligent in recognizing temptations, keeping them at bay with spiritual weapons, and staying in God’s will for our lives! When we do this, God can use us for his glory and our influence will dramatically increase!