Learning To Say No
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world."
1 John 2:15-16
We are often driven by the allure of this world. The world seeks to pull us in all types of different directions that pull us away from living for God. Rebekah and I wanted to go to San Diego for our Honeymoon but the hotels we wanted to stay in were sold out. We thought about where to go and we settled on going to Las Vegas. I am not sure why we settled on Las Vegas, but it seemed to be an exciting place. We were married in August and the Vegas sun waxed hot just like it did in Phoenix, so I am not sure that we thought this all the way through.
We arrived at our hotel on Sunday night the day after our wedding, and we checked into a hotel built like a pyramid. We were enamored by the inclined elevators at our hotel, and we were excited to be on our honeymoon to start our new life together. As we checked in, we noticed loud noises coming from the center of the room. The sound of clanging bells and the melody of slot machines filled our ears, and we wondered how we would be able to sleep through all of this. We got the keys and finally made it to our room, and we closed the door and the room was an amazing sound barrier from the noises we heard coming from the casino floor. The moment we opened our door the sound became deafening once again, and it seemed we entered into a different world.
We made our way to the strip and it was hard not to see that this was the Devil’s playground. The floor was littered with material that appealed to the flesh, and it seemed you could turn in anywhere to fulfill any worldly desire you were attracted to. My dad had reservations about us going to Vegas, and I started to understand why he was wary of the place. The lights on the strip seemed to draw you in but once in, the people on the casino floor looked lifeless and beat down. The allure of the lights did not hide the miserable looks that occupied the faces of those engaged in playing the slot machines. Rebekah and I ending up in the arcade room playing skeet ball and pop a shot to escape the noise of the casino floor. I would be willing to bet that we had more fun in the arcade than those playing the slot machines,
In reading these verses, I am reminded to deny my flesh and the ungodly activities of this world. There are some who will agree with an wordily lifestyle but the Bible is clear that we are to deny our flesh and unholy living. We are to guard against the attraction of the bright lights and the allure of striking it big. The world promises fun with no consequences but you always reap what you sow. There is no real joy in sin although it brings pleasure for a short time. The one second of pleasure is not worth the grave consequences it brings. We are to live a life that is godly and righteous in a world where it seems foreign and repulsive to some. We are called to be attracted to a different light - the light of holiness.
What light are you attracted to today? Are you attracted to the bright lights of sin? Are you drawn to worldly lusts and ungodliness? Are you attracted to the true light of Jesus Christ? Do you deny the flesh that you might live a life that is pleasing to Him in this present world? May we not be mesmerized by the tricks of the Devil, and may our eyes be opened to his devices. Our joy is found in the Savior and not in the bells and whistles of an ungodly world. Live unto righteousness and follow the One who will give you joy that is unspeakable. May we be a light in a dark place, and may we not hide our light under a bushel of sin.
Stay in the fight!