September 18, 2009
The Six Most Dangerous Words Ever
"Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." 1 Peter 5:8 (NIV)
A few months ago, I heard the most horrible news report. It was about a couple who owned a python. One night, the snake escaped from its cage and killed a two-year-old baby. It was heartbreaking. I kept asking, "Why?" Of course, those people never thought that would happen to them.
That's where I ended up in my thoughts ... with what I have decided are the six most dangerous words in the English language:
THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN TO ME!
I don't judge this couple for having the snake. My heart just breaks for them. And my heart breaks for anyone who finds themselves in a devastating situation because they didn't think anything would happen. The hard truth is, every one of us has the potential to make a serious mistake, or a life-altering miscalculation, because we thought we were immune to trouble. Here are examples we see every day:
A woman who enjoys an "innocent" flirtation at work
A kid who gets in the back of a truck
A girl who gets in the car with someone who has been drinking
A couple who moves and stops attending church
A mom who starts an email communication with a man who makes her feel young again
The list goes on and on. Every woman, man and child is a candidate for making a mistake. This is because of our sin-drenched DNA. It's also because we have a tendency to forget this sin-nature, and ignore the fact that we desperately need God's help ... every minute ... every hour ... every day.
When I think "That will never happen to me," I let down my guard. I imagine myself above my circumstances and above the need for God. It's like I open a door for pride to sneak in.
The reality of this world is we are in a battle. Only many people either don't know that, or forget it. We wake up thinking it's going to be a peaceful day. However, for those who have chosen to follow Jesus, we have an enemy who is preparing for a fight. No wonder we are blindsided by the results of our choices. We are in a fight we don't know about.
A passage in 1 Peter reminds me to be on guard, and gives me hope:
"Turn all your worries over to him. He cares about you. Control yourselves. Be on your guard. Your enemy the devil is like a roaring lion. He prowls around looking for someone to chew up and swallow. Stand up to him. Stand firm in what you believe. All over the world you know that your brothers and sisters are going through the same kind of suffering. God always gives you all the grace you need"(1 Peter 5:7-10a, NIRV).
That last verse is what I hang on to when the sadness of this world threatens to overwhelm me. No one is immune to making a mistake that ends with devastating consequences. No one. It's a call to remember that I need God's help every day. And that His grace is enough for me.
Dear Lord, I know how desperately I need Your help. On my own, I'm no match for Satan's schemes. Yet I know You have given me grace to be alert and to stand firm in the face of temptation. Help me to make the right choice in every situation. Forgive me when my selfishness or inattention causes You sadness. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Do you know Jesus invites us to come to Him to repair whatever's broken in our lives? Hear more and be encouraged by this truth on our Radio Show .
Have you made a choice recently you regret? If so, take this opportunity to confess that to God and ask for His forgiveness. Commit to praying for God's strength to stand firm.
What are some dangerous paths women tread, believing they are immune to making a wrong choice?
What are some habits you can develop to keep you alert to the devil's schemes?
Psalm 37:23-24, "If the LORD delights in a man's way, he makes his steps firm; though he stumble, he will not fall, or the LORD upholds him with his hand." (NIV)
Proverbs 2:6, "For the LORD gives wisdom, and from His mouth comes knowledge and understanding." (NIV)
© 2009 by Glynnis Whitwer. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Friday, 18 September 2009.