"Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall."
-- 1 Cor. 10:12
Not long ago, I got up, looked out the window and saw that we had received two inches of snow over the night. So, I got suited up to go start up the snowblower to clear my driveway. As I was on my way out the garage door, I remembered thinking, "be careful, snow on top of ice is very slippery." So, I thought I knew what I was doing, but alas, as I stepped on a very slight slope next to my shed, I slipped. I was thinking all the way down (6-foot-6 is a long ways to fall and it felt like slow motion) "how is there ice here?" As I landed on my back I could hear my 50-year-old bones crunch as if an overzealous chiropractor were taking out his frustrations on me. I was able to turn over but not get up so I laid in the snow until I could. I am typing this article with a very sore neck and shoulders today.
The point is? You can't be too careful. I thought I knew where the ice was, and it was where I thought I was, it also was where I wasn't counting on it being. I should have moved slower, should have paid more attention. I should have put on the ice grippers. I should have ... The context of the text I have cut and pasted to this article is still great advice. Temptation is deceptive. It certainly shows up where we expect it many times, but it shows up too often where we don't expect it. You can't be too careful.
Just when we think we have the enemy all figured out, that we are safe and secure and we are sure we won't get duped, Satan sets a new trap for us. While we can spend our time avoiding the old temptation, we walk into the new. We need to take time to arm ourselves with precautions like prayer, the Word and godly counsel. Just like ice grippers could have kept my shiny side up on the ice, so the Holy Spirit can keep our eyes open to the way of escape that is provided in every temptation.
So, I am taking my aspirin every four hours and vowing to be smarter in the future. I will take the time to avoid another fall, maybe next time it will be with older bones and more consequences. I will also continue to prepare myself daily to walk in the Spirit and avoid the trap of the enemy. On both accounts I will save myself a lot of pain.
Stephen Brown has been the pastor of Kenai New Life Assembly of God for the past 21 years. Read his blog at: carefullychosen.blogspot.com; or the website: kenainewlife.org.
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