Spiritual Practice


Kristin O’Connor & Jessica Lippe

During a recent youth group meeting, a quote flashed across the screen: “Temptation. You will not steal my future. You will not steal my faith.” Those words struck me. At first, I thought they were pretty extreme; but then I began to wonder, Could temptation really ruin my faith and my future?

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Matthew 26:41 (NIV)

Next, our pastor asked us to think about what tempts us. I struggle most with gossiping. I gossip all the time; and no matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to stop. If I continue, I know I could lose all my friends, since no one wants to be around a gossip. And the loneliness I would experience without friends could lead me to question my faith.

I wrote the quotation on an index card and taped it to my mirror. Each morning, I read the words; and they remind me of the damage that can be done by a few words slipping from my mouth. Slowly but surely, God is giving me the courage and strength I need to beat the temptation to gossip.

—Kristin O’Connor, 18

TRY ANOTHER PRACTICE: Sometimes temptations come in sneaky disguises. Limiting distractions can help us be more aware of these covert temptations. Jesus went into the wilderness for 40 days to get away from the distractions of daily life—and he was still tempted! What distracts you from God? Is it texting, the Internet, music, TV? When temptation is knocking at your door, try fasting from one of your regular pastimes to focus on God and trust God to help you overcome the temptation.

—Jessica Lippe, 21

—from devozine (January/February 2013). Copyright © 2012 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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