Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Struggling on the Hook

Read: Hebrews 11:23-26

Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.                                                                      Hebrews 11:25

     Though I really don’t enjoy fishing, I have done it a few times. I see no point in wasting perfectly good sleep to get up early in the morning, and then spending hours waiting for something I’m not even going to eat to magically appear on the end of my fishing line. I realize there is an art to really knowing how to fish, but I’m not an artist, and I have no desire to learn how to fish. Having said that, I have been dragged out to the pier a couple of times. What I have noticed about the fish always intrigues me, though. From a pier, the water is shallow enough to see the interest piquing in a fish as he swims up to where that hook is dancing in the water. The succulent worm seems to be his for the taking. It’s almost as if he knows, however, that a worm shouldn’t be there, and to him, there is something “fishy” about the whole situation. He begins to swim away, but the worm starts screaming his name and calling him back to the hook. He gets closer and closer and begins to nibble at the dangling dinner. Before long, he is mesmerized by the enticement, and he swallows the hook, line, and sinker. The only thing left for the fisherman to do is to reel in the fish, struggling on the hook from which he will not escape.
     So many fall prey to Satan, the master fisherman. He dangles the bait of fornication and impurity. He drops a line of impure thoughts right in front of you. He makes alcohol, drugs and smoking look so cool. He will try to reel you in by getting you to hook up with the wrong friends. He puts temptations in front of you that seem to be screaming your name. You may avoid them for a time because you are afraid of getting caught or because you just know they are not right. However, until you make a firm decision to shun Satan’s advances, he will continue to place those lures in front of you repeatedly. It must be a deliberate choice to avoid his pitfalls. The truth is, just as the worm that is placed in front of the fish is held in place by a hook waiting to cause his demise, the temptations the devil places in front of you are propped up by the unfailing destruction that will render your spiritual life useless and ineffective. Don’t let Satan trick you into thinking that his pleasures are real. It is nothing more than bait that, when you finally take it, will destroy your life.

Quote of the day: “It is better to shun the bait than to struggle on the hook.”

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