Friday, April 07, 2006

Themes of Temptation

This morning I find myself thinking about the story of Jesus being tempted in the desert during that 40-day vigil. It's interesting to me that he was tempted three different ways--to use the power God gave him to sustain himself ("tell these stones to become bread"); to save himself ("throw yourself down"); or to choose what (or whom) to worship. The key here, it seems to me, is to not be fooled into thinking that our care and protection comes from anything or anyone except God. We may think our own efforts in our career are guaranteeing our success (which brings food for our table and shelter from the cold), but who provides the talent, creativity, opportunity that opens the way for our work? Sometimes I get so caught up in working so hard that I get stressed and fearful when I fall behind. When that happens (like earlier this week!), I have to ask myself--what am I afraid of? Who sustains me, protects me, cares for me? When I realize that my work, my health, my support comes from God alone, I begin to relax and return to my work with less force and fear. I work with focus and integrity. I enjoy what I do. And I thank the One who brings all good things into my life for bringing my mind back to the place of peace and green pastures.

Happy Friday, everyone!

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