3/21 Temptation: No Shortcuts

Sometimes, the temptation is to find a shortcut or the easy way out as Jesus saw in the wilderness. Today PT gives us a word to help us stay the course.

REFLECTION VERSE: We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now He is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne. Heb 12:2 (NLT)

When Jesus was led into the wilderness to be tempted, He went with the power of God. That's true. But He still had to face the evil one in his humanity. He had to learn obedience, and part of that obedience that He was learning, that was being revealed, had to do with his ability to confront the evil one and stay the course.

In his humanity, Jesus came against the temptation that Satan was presenting him to avoid the cross. If you look at the Temptations themselves, they're all designed to give Jesus an alternative route to something, but it was going to cost him—It was going to cost him in the long haul. It was a price too steep to pay to ultimately be owned by the devil.

The Lord decided to submit himself fully to the purposes of God. He committed himself in that temptation to the Lord's plan for his life--the Father's plan--so should we. We will find ourselves at times faced with things that are designed to get us off course, to take an alternative route, to somehow avoid the part that's gonna be hard. And yet the Lord's way--the way to blessing--the way that blesses people is always connected to staying with the plan that the Father has, even if that plan leads to suffering. The cross would have to be endured, that's true, but out of it would come life ever more for you and for me.

Let's not avoid the cross moments in our lives. Let's do it God's way. His way is the best way.  It's what we're asking him to give us strength to do, follow in his example, the example of Jesus.