Sunday, August 26, 2007


Temptation can be like a fog--it's hard to see what's out there. I've been on the road, just driving along some mornings on the way to work at 4:30am and hit a fog bank. It's white knuckles on the steering wheel time. For safety's sake, I have to slow down, and commit all my senses to making my way, looking for clues. I sometimes roll down the window to hear better, sometimes beep my horn as I go through the intersection. Pity the fool that keeps driving on like nothing is wrong with the visibility.

Today, I have been dealing with a temptation to believe that I can be independent of God. It crept up on me as I was washing the dishes and stuck on me as I went through the day. I prayed, wondering why God seemed so distant, remembering when I enjoyed rich fellowship with Him, through the blood of Christ. Tonight, our pastor, Kevin, challenged us to love God's Word like in Psalm 119--to delight in it, desire it and be dedicated to it. And tonight, as we heard Psalm 119, it was easier to see what was going on--like a fog finally broke up in my spirit and the light shined in. I needed to remember Philippians 4:19 "And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus."

So how does a young man, woman or anyone for that matter, keep their way pure? I've memorized that verse 25 years ago, and I do have a few experiences in seeing how God has used it in my life. It is a good time to be reminded of them.

Purity, as I understand it, is a state of being unmixed with another substance. It is 100 percent of one thing. And that one thing, for a Christian, is Jesus. How do we keep our way 100 percent of Jesus? By keeping it according to God's Word.

When we think of purity, we think of things we should not do. But God says it involves something else. His Word will purify us--kept in our hearts, so that we may not sin against Him. We look at everything differently--through the lens of God's Word that we have meditated and memorized. We are not left to our own devices. The Holy Spirit guides us through those verses in our hearts.

I've been thinking about Mother Teresa, and the news that she experienced spiritual doubt. What I am impressed with is that she didn't stay silent about it, she reached out to close friends, asked for prayer and stayed on track with obeying God. She allowed others to help her.

When I go to church, I'm specifically allowing for the possibility for God to use others to help me, and allowing God to use me in helping others. It can happen, and it's okay if it doesn't, we're open and available because we can't do it alone, and the fog can be a lonely place to be.

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