Times You Should Expect To Face Temptation
Temptation is a mysterious thing. There must be method to the madness, there must be patterns of how and when we are tempted by specific sins. If there are, I’ve never quite been able to hack or solve the system. But at the very least we can observe this: There are some times in life when you should be especially wary, when temptation is especially likely. Here are times you should expect to face temptation.
1 . During Time of prosperity
Prosperity and temptation often go hand-in-hand. You need to be careful, though—prosperity is not a curse and you do not need to dread it or be suspicious of it. Rather, you need to have an awareness that prosperity carries with it fuel that feeds temptation. Agur knew this and wrote in Proverbs, “Give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is needful for me, lest I be full and deny you and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’” Guard yourself in times of abundance and prepare yourself for the likelihood of an onslaught of temptation. Look especially for the temptation of ingratitude, denying that your prosperity is a gift of God’s grace; look for the temptation of greed, hoarding your wealth instead of being generous with it; look for the temptation of pride, believing that this abundance proves that God favors you over others. Always be aware that prosperity may be a kind of smokescreen that obscures the great temptation lurking behind it. Be wary of prosperity!
2 . During The Time of Spiritual Highs
Just as temptation may be close behind your spiritual doldrums, it may also be lurking close behind your spiritual heights. You can observe this very thing in the life of Paul, who was given the great gift of being caught up to the third heaven and seeing Christ there. Yet immediately he was visited by Satan (2 Corinthians 12:7) who tried to discourage and crush him. God loves to bless us with those times of freedom and pleasure. We love to be blessed by him in this way! But temptation may lie close at hand. In those times of great spiritual enjoyment you may be so satisfied in your current state that you begin to neglect the means of grace, you stop fighting sin, you accept this delight as your due. You may even brag about the heights you have reached, and all but beg God to chasten and humble you.