I’ve only been fishing once but would love to learn and try it again sometime. From what I understand fish pretty much think about one thing: eating. That’s about the sum of their life, looking for food and eating it. The problem is there are these humans who toss out lures on fishing lines that dangle and float in the water. They look like food but inside is a hook that, unbeknownst to the fish, will ensnare it and begin reeling it in to become dinner.
There are lots of lures in this life: things, people, entertainment, pastimes, hobbies, habits, and more that appear good on the outside but inside is a hook, a trap. If we bite, it could little by little pull us away from God, from our true purpose, from real and fulfilling life.
I have to admit, I’ve been biting some. Yesterday in church John brought a great message about Jesus being tempted by satan to turn stone into bread when he was famished and weak. Jesus saw the hook in satan’s lure and didn’t bite. Instead He answered back, “Man doesn’t live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from God’s mouth.” (Matthew 4:4) Bread isn’t a bad thing, but if it were to become the priority over Jesus’ obedience to God and perseverance through testing, it would have pulled him away from his true purpose and mission.
I let busy stuff, facebook, the Internet, messing around, housework, yard work, texting or playing with my phone, and more distract me and fill my day. Soon it’s time to go to bed and I’ve not cracked open my Bible or spent time just sitting with God in prayer. I feel empty, restless and frustrated with myself.
God reminded me yesterday in church that I don’t have to bite, that I can resist with His help and stay close to Him. I can be free and walk the path God has for me without getting pulled this way and that.
So, I’m giving up bread until Easter, just to practice discipline and to remind myself each time I want bread that I don’t live by that alone. I live by the time I spend with God, by the love and grace He gives me, by my relationship with Him and nearness to Him. He is my nourishment and sustaining life. I can’t expect to walk in spiritual health if I only call on Him on Sundays or once a while in “microwave” prayer times.
Yep, it was only our third Sunday at church and the pastor’s wife went to the altar. Hey, I can be as weak sometimes as the next person even though I don’t want to be.
Papa, remind me of true life, of your purpose for me. Help me walk in it and walk closer to You. I crave that more than any other earthly thing.