I was spending the morning at home cooking for a friend who recently had a baby. I found myself uncomfortable with the time I had on my hands while I waited for the meal to cook. It is so seldom to have free time. I prayed, “God, show me how you want me to spend my time this morning.” Without a pause, I heard my heart call out, “Spend it with Me!” “Of course!”, I thought. As I walked down the hallway towards my bible and looked out the front door, I saw a newspaper hung up in the thorns of our rose bushes. We don’t even subscribe to the newspaper! There I was, on my way to the bible and in just seconds the world had caught my eye. I found myself starting to divert my focus from spending time with God to going out to get the newspaper. “I never get to just sit and read the newspaper.”, I thought as I tried to justify the tempting change of plans. Surly, if “the newspaper” had been my choice, I would have gotten tangled up in more than the thorns from that rose-bush that day.
You must be thinking . . . big deal if you chose the newspaper. That won’t get you into any trouble. Satan wants us to believe that too. However, it occurred to me that most sin starts small, but if we continue to make the same choice it will build slowly over time and then we are in so deep it is just easier to keep going down that path than getting back on the right one.
Staying with it—that’s what God requires. Stay with it to the end. You won’t be sorry, and you’ll be saved. All during this time, the good news—the Message of the kingdom—will be preached all over the world, a witness staked out in every country. And then the end will come. Matthew 24:13 (The Message)
The more times I choose TV and the computer over bible study, the easier it gets to leave God behind. The more we tell a little lie here and there, the easier it gets to do it. The more we spend time and talk with someone of the opposite sex instead of our spouse, the more likely we are to fall victim to adultery. We must be careful and not fall into the trap of believing that telling a lie is a better sin than committing adultery. As people, we rank sin, but God does not!
When he came back to his disciples, he found them sound asleep. He said to Peter, “Can’t you stick it out with me a single hour? Stay alert; be in prayer so you don’t wander into temptation without even knowing you’re in danger. There is a part of you that is eager, ready for anything in God. But there’s another part that’s as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire.” Matthew 26:40
We are all on the edge in one area of our lives. What area of your life needs a little more margin? When we continually choose the world over our Lord and Savior the easier it is to fall prey to the sins of the world. We have to choose God. We have to choose to stay in His Word so that we can stay in His will. He didn’t warn us of things to be controlling and keep us from having any fun. Like most parents, He teaches and guides us through His word in the hope of keeping us from pain, sadness and destruction.
And wherever he went—into villages, towns or countryside—they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed. Mark 6:56