Being Confident of This

Grace for the work-in-progress woman

When Temptation Lingers Near

on May 7, 2013

Today I want to share with something I wrote many months ago.  It was written during a time of discouragement and trials galore.  My husband and I were both under a lot of external stress, both personal and from ministry, and our marriage temporarily suffered.  I felt like one of the Israelites in the desert, bemoaning my situation and feeling helpless to enact change.

When I first wrote it, I was not intending to ever share it anywhere.  The words just sort of poured out in the middle of my frustration and attempt to make sense of the chaos around me.  I often find that writing helps me to communicate with God and understand the wisdom He’s trying to impart.  So, I share it with you today, hoping that it may encourage you if you’re facing a situation that seems impossible or a day, or even a moment, that seems unbearable.  I hope you find comfort in the fact that you are not alone and that He always provides a way out!

temptation, marriage, victory

It’s almost supper time, but the stove top sits empty and no pleasing aromas fragrance the air.  I’ve not even yet decided what to cook, let alone made any sort of preparations.  Instead, I’m sitting in my bedroom trying desperately to pray while my preschoolers whine for attention right outside of the bedroom door.  My husband, whom I’ve just argued with, sits just outside the door as well at the dining room table.  He’s grumbling over the budget and seems unaware of the noise around him.  There is no peace, no quiet.

But I NEED to pray because I am one moment away from falling into temptation.  One moment from allowing my impatience, anger, resentment, and frustration to spill over onto my family.  One moment away from blowing any chance at doing right.  At this moment I am certain, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Satan has set his sights on me; I’m being tested.

It isn’t the first of such evenings in my home.  In fact, our marriage relationship has been under strain for a few months now, and I’ve grown oh-so-weary of “fighting the good fight.”  However, this past week, God has shown me the truth of my situation; I haven’t been doing my part, either.  I have been selfish.  I have been lazy.  I have been avoiding the time with my Lord that I need.  Thus, I recently resolved to make some positive changes, knowing full well that temptation would linger near.

So as I sit here in my room praying while the chaos rages just outside of the door, I laugh.  Yes, I laugh!  It’s absurd, even comical, that every other person in my home (and there are five) would suddenly become distractions at the very moment I attempt to find peace.  I want to complain to the Lord that I’m trying so hard to do what is right, to seek Him in my moment of weakness, but He’s not making it very easy!

no temptation

In that moment of laughter, I realize the truth that as long as I’m trying to do right, to obey God, Satan is not going to leave me alone.  In fact, He’s even going to use good things like bible study and prayer against me by causing frustration and chaos at just the right moment.  Thankfully, now that God has shown me the truth of the matter, Satan cannot win.  I see his game plan for what it is, and prayer is a powerful tool!  Sorry, Satan, I’m getting up from my throne of self-pity and frustration, and I’m cooking supper tonight!

Lord, I thank you for always providing a way out for us, even when it seems impossible or unbearable!  I ask that you would encourage my sisters in Christ today to look for the way out when they face temptation. Help them to see the truth in whatever situations they face.  Remind them that You are with them always, every step of the way, even when it doesn’t feel like it.  Give them the strength they need to resist temptation and to flee the Devil and remind them of your unfailing love and grace for them because of your Son, Jesus Christ.  I ask all of these things in the name of Jesus, Amen.

Jen 🙂

You may find me linking up at any of these lovely blogs.


12 responses to “When Temptation Lingers Near

  1. Mary @ Woman to Woman says:

    Oh Jen, I love that you stomped on Satan’s head and didn’t allow Him to take a victory lap! I especially appreciate you prayer, as I’m going through an exceptionally difficult time and love the reminder that He is with me in the thick of it and lavishly loves me.
    [How’s that for a run-on sentence!} 🙂 Excellent post!
    I’m so glad you visited my place!
    Blessings to you ~ Mary

    • Thank you, Mary. I don’t think I’ve ever been as aware of Satan’s handiwork as I have been since my husband took a full-time ministry job. He really loves to work on us when we’re trying to follow the Lord, doesn’t he? I’m so glad you found some encouragement in it! I really appreciated your post as well.
      Jen 🙂

  2. Tracy says:

    Hi Jen, times like that are hard and its when you recognise the attack for what it is and refocus on the Lord that things start coming right, although, sometimes the attacks become more persistent. But, it is for a season and like you say, one has to keep walking God’s path and He, in His turn, will keep catching us and keep protecting us. Great post to link up at Encourage 24/7’s Testimonial page. I know it will bless those who read it.
    God bless
    Tracy

  3. Elizabeth says:

    This is a very practical and encouraging post — meeting us all where the rubber meets the road! Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing!

  4. Elisa says:

    Thanks so much for sharing and linking up with Transformed Tuesdays at moretobe.com. You’re not alone in this journey of steadfast commitment and immediate onslaught of temptation. Praise God for your discernment and seeking Him.

  5. […] I am called to be is my weak area, my Achilles heel.   I never feel so much like Paul in Romans 7, battling with the flesh, as when marital issues arise. Often Satan and sin have me so ensnared that I even become confused […]

  6. […] of your life, don’t be surprised to find the Enemy lurking just around the corner.  He loves to set a trap for us when we are the most joyful, the most productive, the most faithful, the most determined.  He […]

Leave a Reply to Elisa Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: