So I made bacon for breakfast this morning – not something I do very often (I’m not really a big fan of bacon), but I just had one of those cravings. After I ate my breakfast of bacon and fried egg whites (yummy!), and, of course, coffee, I got right to writing (something I’ve been neglecting way too much lately). In the middle of a sentence, I noticed, suddenly, that I could still smell bacon…
I began to think about bacon. Mmmmmm, bacon! I couldn’t get it out of my head. Bacon kept interrupting my train of thought, making me lose my place and so I had to reread what I’d just written and start over again. I was consumed by thoughts of bacon!!!! Again, I don’t really even like bacon that much, so why was I, just a few hours later, craving bacon again? (Hungry yet?)
Then it dawned on me that while I had washed my hands after eating breakfast, I obviously had not scrubbed them quite enough. The bacon smell would not leave me alone, would not stop tempting me, because it was a secret part of me. I couldn’t see it on my fingers, but I could sure smell it. I got up from the keyboard, went to the closest sink (in the kitchen), and saturated my hands with soap and water, scrubbing the last vestiges of my temptation away.
It made me think of the sin in my life – how I’m tempted to do things I shouldn’t do (things I don’t even like to do) and I try to clean up the mess myself. I rinse off, but instead of really cleaning it out, the sin is just shoved under my fingernails to keep popping up at the strangest times, distracting me, tempting me back into the same patterns. Yet, when I take those sins to my Lord, He will get out the soap and water and really scrub me clean. When I lean on Him, ask Him to cleanse me, temptation has no hold on me – what an awesome promise!
The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. -1 Corinthians 10:13