Getting Through Temptation
Upon arriving to college, I didn't know what to think. I had ideas of what college was like but in reality, it is totally different. College is hard. College is a world of its own filled with highs, lows, challenges and conquers. College isn't just mentally challenging but it challenges you in ways that you wouldn't imagine. Being a devout Christian is even more challenging in college, especially with the immense amount of temptation and things that lure the mind and convict the spirit.
James 1:12-15 focuses on this concept of temptation and applies life application to it. Recently, the book of James has been a very insightful book in the Bible for me in my collegiate journey. Verse 12 of chapter 1 states,“Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love him.” In essence what this verse is speaking on is the ones who keep enduring and preserving in any season of their life, then God will reward them with blessings. This verse isn't saying that if we follow God's exact word, then we will receive all the blessings we want but that if we live by his commandments, we will be blessed in the time frame God has for us.
In college, this idea reins true. Temptation is all around us; in everyday life, on social media, and especially in things we see and want right then. This can apply in everyday life as well, not just college. Temptation can seep into the mind and heart of a person when one gets alone and the mind starts to drift. One of my favorite verses in the Bible is “An idle mind is the devils playground” this verse comes from Philippians 4:8. I can clearly see this verse manifesting in a lot of college students lives. Once many of us get into college we feel free but also pressured to perfect ourselves. Everything becomes a competition and the desire to meet this standard creates difficulty in the mind that manifest into other parts of life and onto others.
When our minds become idle temptation becomes stronger. The ending of James 1:15 states that “when temptation is conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.” I personally can relate to this verse because there has been personal times in my life where I have felt the festering of temptation in my heart. What I have learned is that, you can either address the festering and find the root cause of it to eliminate it, or you can allow it to keep festering in your mind. But the latter doesn’t work. Desire and temptation are two very hard issues to just push aside. Once you allow temptation into your heart, it grows and can take over your mind. I learned that the only way to combat this issue is to:
1). Pray and focus on God. God knows why you are thinking these things and wants focus as his children to rely on him for help. God did not design us to go through things alone nor does he want temptation to take over our lives, we have to trust in him and address issues at the root cause.
2). We must be willing to be real with ourselves and allow ourselves to make mistakes. No one is perfect so we must understand that.
3). We have to learn to not act on impulsivity. If we do not think of how engaging in this
temptation or desire will affect our future, then we will never be able to grow.
Temptation will come but how do you deal with it?