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Lead us not into temptation

I recently did something, which seemed ‘cute and harmless’ in the moment, but ended up being quite regrettable! Joni and I visited our son and his family for a couple of days and during our visit our 15- month old granddaughter, Emerson, put her ‘binky’ (pacifier) in my mouth. Knowing that toddlers are not careful about their health habits I winced a little, but she thought it was fun so I allowed her to put the ‘binky’ in my mouth and take it out. No big deal, right? The next morning my son told me that Emerson had been up all night vomiting (hit by the stomach bug!). I felt bad for my sweet, little granddaughter and her tired parents, but it, also, hit me that the ‘binky’ game would likely end badly for me! Alas, it did two days later….but that’s probably way too much information for most of you. :)

My point is that sometimes we are tempted ‘to do stuff’ which, with a little more thought and prayer, we might wisely pass on! I am reminded of an Old Testament story in Joshua 9 in which the Israelite leaders were faced with a choice, which seemed obvious at first glance, but involved deception and some long-term consequences for their people. They made a wrong choice, we are told, because they “did not inquire of the Lord.” (Joshua 9:14) They could have checked with God first, but it seemed so obvious, that they didn’t bother too. And the results were painful. That simple story reminds us of the importance of prayer.

At Bethany Christian Church we began 2016 by focusing on the need to pray. There is no need we have that is too big for God to handle, and no concern that is too small to be worthy of our loving Father’s guidance. That’s why the earliest Christians “devoted themselves to prayer.” (Acts 2:42) When you are tempted to think that some choices are so obvious that you don’t need to pray….remember the wisdom of ‘binky’ prayers….because sin will do far more damage in our lives than a stomach bug! We may make any number of questionable choices in 2016, but praying ‘too’ much will not be one of them! (I Thessalonians 5:17)

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