Monday, December 5, 2016

The Favorite Toy

This time of year the newspapers and television ads are filled with things people want us to buy. You will look "fabulous" in a new fur coat. Mom and dad waking the kids and running outside to see the new Mercedes that Santa brought them. All the materialism is WAY beyond me! Or so I thought.

Everybody loves Christmas. The decorations, the wonder of it all, presents under the Christmas tree. But it IS possible to get too much "Christmas." The true meaning of Christmas can be fleeting or lost, just like last years favorite toy, which now lies under the bed, broken and forgotten.

I was at Fleet Farm (a.k.a. The Man Mall) the other day. I was just wandering around looking for nothing in particular. That's when I saw it. A brand new, never before seen (by me), shiny golf disc. I LOVE to play disc golf. Yes, I know it's December, but time has no meaning when appreciating the beautiful things in life. Like a new driver!

So I picked it up and held it. It was smooth and new. It had never hit a tree or gotten lost. It had never felt the air as it knifed its way toward its destination. And it was only $16. I thought about buying it. I had the money and the desire, but I put it back on the shelf, sighing. Tempted to be sure but also practical. It will still be here five months from now when I could actually use it, so I walked away.

On the way home I was thinking about my faith and my life and how easy it is to fall into temptation. Then yesterday in church our pastor throws this at me.

"God gives us all the we need, to do all that He asks of us."

That sentence led me to search for similar verses. I found this.

"His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.

10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble, 11 and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." - 2 Peter 1:3-11

My temptation with the shiny object at Fleet Farm was relatively easy to overcome. There are more difficult temptations in this world - lust, drunkenness, gluttony, sexual perversion, sloth, false worship, idolatry, the list goes on and on. Everybody has their favorite "toy." What's yours?

I think what I need to remember is that, when I am tempted, I need to remember God and His promises. I need to remember He has given me everything I need. It's all in the Bible.

When we are tempted we must first recognize the temptation and then ask ourselves, "Is what I am about to do honoring to God? Is this the best thing I can do in this situation? Or should I turn and leave?"

There is one thing we can do to overcome temptation. It can be found in the Book of Hebrews. Five little words is all we need to remember.

"Fix your eyes on Jesus." -  Hebrews 12:2

I Am Buzz Lightyear - Toy Story
When Sin Looks More Enjoyable Than God - Francis Chan

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