Malankara World

Today with Jesus

Temptations

by Rev. Fr. V.V. Paulose, Toronto, Canada

Today's Bible Verse

"But when you are tempted, he will also give you a way to escape so that you will be able to stand it." (1 Corinthians 10:13)

Discussion

Can we live without continually giving into temptations?

Yes. St. John says, "Those who are God's children do not continue sinning because the new life from God remains in them. They are not able to go on sinning, because they have become children of God " (1 John 3:9).

A Buddhist story goes that a man climbs a distant hilltop to study with a wise monk. After many years of study, he seems to have reached enlightenment. He returns to his village. Soon he passes the home of a peasant woman who is washing her clothes. She empties her washtub and accidently splashes him with dirty water. The man loses his temper. He must now return to the mountaintop.

Years later, the man feels he has finally reached enlightenment. Again, as he heads back to his village, he passes the house where the woman is doing her laundry. Again he is splashed with dirty water. He loses his temper and once more returns to his mediation practice.

Like the Buddhist, we do fasting, meditation, prayer, practice , breathing, etc., to control anger and believe we are in the promised land of self-control. Then you return home to find your partner has left a sink full of dirty dishes or your daughter refuses to get out of bed and the school bus is on its way. You feel your frustration rise. Your serene mood disappears.

In a culture filled with moral depravity and sin inducing pressures, we are always faced with a lot of temptations. But we should not cave in. Any temptation can be resisted because God will show you a way out.
1. Recognize the people and situations that give you trouble.
2. Run from anything you know is wrong.
3. Choose to do only what is right.
4. Pray for God s help, and
5. Seek friends who love God and can offer help when you are tempted.

Billy Graham, the most famous evangelist in the world, goes on despite years of suffering from Parkinson's disease, despite many falls, surgeries, failing eye sight, failing hearing and Alzheimer's disease. There is no anger or complaint in his voice, just the calm demeanor of someone who is certain that another world awaits. Graham, a founder of The Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability, was scrupulous about tracking funds long before the tele-evangelism scandals of 1980's to till today. He says he has never been alone in a room with a woman who is not related to him. He says, I used to read 5 Psalms everyday - that teaches me how to get along with God. Then I read a chapter of Proverbs everyday and that teaches me how to get along with my fellow man."

"All things are possible for one who believes." (Mark 9:23)

Prayer

Jesus, lead us not into temptations. Deliver us from the evil ones. Let us get godly friends to support and help in the time of our temptations. We pray for those who are struggling to come out from sins. Let your spirit control us. Let us be witness for you in all our walks of life. We pray for the young to be strong to overcome their temptations and challenges in Christian life. All we ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.

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