Could you cast away a forest? After living in California, I know how forests are destroyed. It’s very scary! Fire has destroyed much of California’s forests. It destroyed the city of Paradise. My heart breaks at the destruction and the loss. The question still stands. Could you cast away a forest? The answer is, “yes,” but it doesn’t have to be by fire. If someone gave you a bag of seeds to grow a forest, you could get rid of the seeds. You don’t have to plant them. No fire. No danger. No loss.
So then, what about the seeds of death in our lives? Do we have the power to destroy them before they destroy us? What if we could bury things that bring death, physically and spiritually? What if we would resist the temptation of unforgiveness before it becomes bitterness? or lust before it becomes adultery or fornication? or worry before it becomes fear or anxiety? or anger before it becomes malice? The longer we entertain temptation, the harder it is to defeat sin, and sin out of control in our lives is death.
Life that dwells on unforgiveness, lust, or worry reaps a whirlwind of consequences: illness, pain and suffering. Scripture supports this truth: “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” (Proverbs 17:22). “All the days of the oppressed are wretched, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast” (Proverbs 15:15). “Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up” (Proverbs 12:25). “I tried cheering myself with wine, and embracing folly–my mind still guiding me with wisdom” (Ecclesiastes 2:3).
THINK ABOUT IT
Our Lord Jesus knows about temptation. “He had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that He might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because He Himself suffered when He was tempted, He is able to help those who are being tempted” (Hebrews 2:17).
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).
PRAY ABOUT IT
Heavenly Father, thank you for Jesus. Please send your Spirit on us in the issues of our lives: shame, despair, anxiety or loneliness, and keep us from temptation into sin. Empower us with your word to stand tall with the truth and with your compassion and your love. Help us to become the people you created us to be. In Jesus’ name, Amen.