Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Way of Escape

1 Corinthians 10:13
"No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it."

My biggest temptation right now is impatience with my children. No parent can relate to that, right? The things that make me realize my impatience are when I hear my voice rise or grow hard, or when I start to roll my eyes with a heavy sigh. I have to stop and check my motive. Most of the time, I don't really want to do that right then. And yet... 1 Corinthians 10:13 comes to mind. God has provided a way of escape in my temptation. I have a choice each moment to sin and love myself first or my children first. I can put my own desires over how I treat them, or I can treat them like my neighbor, as the famous biblical commandment goes. (" your neighbor as yourself." Matthew 22:39) Love is always a choice first, with the feelings following your choices.

I am thankful for the choice not to sin; that God is sovereign and gracious enough to provide the way of escape when I am tempted. While I may not particularly care for the responsibility of the choice, I am glad for the freedom of choice. Isn't it interesting how God's sovereignty allows for my free will? So often, those two things seem to be in conflict, and yet, from God's "10,000-foot view" it all makes sense.

I thank the Lord for "the way of escape," not only for the freedom to choose, but for the knowledge that I can do something about my sin. Each time I catch myself in an eye roll and sigh that shows where my focus is (myself), I also know that I can choose to shift my focus. To exercise 2 Corinthians 10:5 and take "...every thought captive to the obedience of Christ[.]" I'm not stuck; God has provided a way out. I need to look for it, and to choose God's love.

What do you do that warns you're headed down the wrong path? How can you change your thoughts or actions to align with Christ's will?