Girlfriends in God - Nov. 6, 2007

Published: Nov 06, 2007



November 6, 2007

“Don’t Scratch That Itch!”

Gwen Smith



Today’s Truth

“When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed (James 1:13-14 NIV).


Friend to Friend

I recently woke up with a spider bite that was the size of a quarter. It may as well have been the size of North Carolina for as much as it itched! I was half tempted to scratch my arm off. That nasty bite was just begging to be scratched. But I’ve learned a thing or two in my thirty-something years, and one thing I know for sure: it’s best not to scratch this type of itch.


It would be like opening a bag of chips with the naive intention of eating only one (yeah, right!) I knew that if I started scratching my bug bite, it would be nearly impossible to stop. I would regret having ever started.


Super-itchy bug bites are a lot like temptations. Temptations are itchy! The call on us with urgent voices that scream, “Scratch me! Scratch me!” Yet, in all reality, a little scratch will not satisfy temptation’s itch at all…it will just make matters worse. When we scratch the itch of temptation, the itch does not diminish. To the contrary, it increases.


When we resist temptation, our faith is mobilized and the muscles of our character are strengthened. Joseph was a man of integrity who did right in the eyes of the Lord, but boy did he face some temptation! You can read the detailed account in Genesis 39.


Joseph was seduced by temptation in the form of his master’s wife. Mrs. Potiphar wanted her husband’s right-hand man to sleep with her, and she pursued him with aggression. It was a hand-delivered invitation to sin that had itchy written all over it. But he flat-out refused.


“My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?” And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her (Genesis 39:9-10).


Temptation chased Joseph relentlessly. Oh, how he must have longed for the itching to stop! To give in would be sinful. To give in was simply not an option for this young man of character. So on the day that Potiphar’s wife caught him by the cloak and begged again for Joseph to sleep with her, Joseph ran out of the house. He ran from that tempting situation as fast as his legs would carry him.


God was honored in Joseph’s response.


He ran from temptation.


We would be wise to do the same.


It took all the will power I could muster to keep from scratching that bug bite. I had to re-direct my thinking to persevere through the temptation. I mentally ran from it. When we resist temptation, God is honored and our character is strengthened. What do you need to run from today?


Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, I need You so much. I constantly find myself being dragged away and enticed by temptation. In those moments, please give me the strength to run the other way, and give me the wisdom to run to Your arms. I really want to be a woman of godly character. Help me be that woman! In Jesus’ Name,



Now It’s Your Turn

Contemplate the following questions: What have you been dragged away and enticed by in the past? How did you respond? How have you grown from those experiences?


Temptation comes in all shapes and sizes. It might be calling your name from your pantry – or from your computer – or from a bottle - or from another cubicle in your office. What temptations do you face today? Name them and run the other way!


Though our sovereign God allows trials to enter our lives, He does not ever tempt us. Tuck that truth in your heart today, and the next time you experience a temptation – great or small – recognize that the enemy is behind the allure. Then tell him to get behind you and pray that Jesus will re-direct your thinking.


More from the Girlfriends

I wish my temptations were always as simple as the itch of a pesky little bug bite! But, of course, they are not. Each of us will encounter some real whoppers in our lives. James chapter one tells us that when we persevere through trials and temptations, one rewards is maturity. That really encourages me! I hope it encourages you as well.

Looking for a great Christmas gift? Gwen’s inspirational music can be heard and purchased on her website ( How about giving the gift of Jesus…packaged in song this year? Gwen’s CDs BECAUSE and THROUGH ALL GENERATIONS make wonderful gifts! Order yours today.


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Girlfriends in God

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Matthews, NC 28106



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Originally published Tuesday, 06 November 2007.