Thursday, January 19, 2017

Stones to Bread

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil…he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, ‘If you are...tell those stones to become bread’” Matthew 4:1-3.

There is so much packed into this passage in recognizing certain things when we are walking through a tough season. When we, as believers, lack understanding we need to look no further than Jesus’ example while on earth. Jesus didn’t wake up and find Himself in the wilderness as if something strange happened to Him. He was well aware that He was being led by God to experience the wilderness. He followed the Spirit into the desolate area…the area where no one would be around for companionship…fellowship…relationship. Jesus made His companion the Holy Spirit. We are told that after 40 days and nights, Satan showed up on the scene. Satan will always lay in waiting until we are at our weakest. He plays dirty and he knows it is easier to catch us off guard when we are ‘hungry…lonely…angry…sick.’ He looks for opportunities to attack when we lack the best version of ourselves.

He will tempt us to ‘tell our stones to become bread’…that is, self-talk that is nothing but lies. It is the caregiver who is riddled with guilt because of the feelings she is experiencing in her care for others…she is tired. It is the person who speaks bitterness instead of forgiveness because she bought the lie that she is entitled…she is angry. It is the man who doubts he will ever get well and experiences hopelessness…he is sick. It is the person who isolates themselves believing they are not loved…they are lonely.

When we walk through tough seasons, we better believe that we will be harassed by the tempter. But we do not walk alone for God is with us and never leaves us. We can have confidence that when we are in the wilderness, God has allowed it but will help us be victorious through it. We must train up our minds in the Word and what God says about our circumstances…not what our emotions tell us. Like Jesus, the more knowledge and wisdom about God’s character and truths that we have, the better response we will give to the temptations laid before us. Our biggest worry should be that we wouldn’t recognize our tempter. Satan condemns, God convicts. 

Condemnation convinces us we are less than…conviction points us to who we can be in God.

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