1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
Let's not fool ourselves. Temptations are rampant in this world, ringing our doorbells, our cell phones and our social media for recognition and submission to their alluring whims. It is, as the Scripture above states, common to mankind.
But it's not part of God's plan for us to fall into the traps others might lay along our path. Recently, I have to intercede, rather forcefully, but I pray, lovingly, to make my point with a person very dear to me. It's not where I want to be. After all, who wants to nail another on a major shortcoming when I know I have my own to bear? My own plank in the eye when I'm trying to remove the mote from another's?
Yet, the disastrous potential for this loved one begs intervention, encouragement, and assurance of support. He is currently blinded by the promises of the world, false at best, evil at worst. His choices made in the recent past have been neither wise nor life-giving.
I can't stand idly by without attempting, at least, to be his voice of reason. A convincing, convicting voice of reason. And that wisdom comes only from God, by humbling myself in prayer and supplication before Him
Ironically, Pope Francis' recent proclamation to change The Lord's Prayer hits the nail on the head for me. What follows is an excerpt from an article published on Fox News:
The Catholic leader changed the phrase "lead us not into temptation" to "do not let us fall into temptation," as mentioned in the gospel of Matthew 6:13, because the original translation implies that God induces temptation. The change, officials said, is closer to the original intent of the prayer. "I am the one who falls; it's not Him pushing me into temptation to then see how I have fallen," Francis explained to Italian broadcasters about the phrase change. "A father doesn't do that, a father helps you to get up immediately. It's Satan who leads us into temptation, that's his department."
I like this change, because in my heart, I know it's true. God never tempts us, only Satan does. It is our faith in God's saving grace that allows us to resist the temptations that bombard us daily, and threaten to separate us from Him.
So, my constant and consistent prayer for this loved one in need of the Father's guiding hand, is that he would come to know that God stands at the ready to help him resist the temptations that would destroy the life the Lord has planned for him. God always provides the way out when we trust in Him.
Let us pray:
Our Father, who art in Heaven
Hallowed be thy name,
Thy kingdom come, thy will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
And forgive us our trespasses
As we forgive those who trespass against us.
Do not let us fall into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever.