Halloween candy goes on sale this week. Before you snatch up your favorites, beware of the monster you may unleash. Here’s my recent battle with temptation.
Somebody knew women who like china, love chocolate and placed my favorite treat among housewares. I picked up the 14.1 ounce Swiss chocolate bar and remembered its smooth taste. “I’ll buy it for you?” my friend said. “Absolutely not!” I put it back and walked away, but the temptation had taken root. I ambled back to look at the fat grams, 12 grams per serving. Ridiculous. Who eats just one serving? I walked away.
I discovered this chocolate on a mission trip in Europe. The music of that experience played in my mind. In those days this candy was rare in America. I could save it for when I really wanted chocolate.
The check-out clerk said he had never seen such a big chocolate bar. Good, I thought. It must be fresh.
Now chocolate is tormenting me. One serving is a tease. I know chocolate is like that sponge that begins the size of a flat dollar bill but puffs up in water to the size of a walrus. Every crumb of chocolate fat explodes into ten thousand pounds of human fat. If someone can figure out how to pack one million photographs into a small plastic chip, you’d think they could keep cocoa fat from expanding within your body.
We’ve given Eve a hard time for eating the forbidden fruit, but if it smelled like chocolate, I understand. Wrestling with chocolate reminded me of how consuming and powerful temptation can be. How do you break off one serving of your favorite treat—and stop?
Jesus faced a test much more excruciating than anything I’ll ever face. Therefore, He is able to help me when I’m tempted to sin. It is one thing to be tempted to indulge a pleasure, but it is quite another to suffer on the cross when you have the power to get off.
Hebrews 12:4, (NIV) says, “In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.” But Jesus has (Luke 22:44). He sweat blood and agonized in prayer before going to the cross. He could have left at anytime. Yet He stayed on the cross for the joy of rescuing us and pleasing His Father.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God,” (Heb. 12:1-2, NIV).
Someone has said heaven will be a place with no bad options. Until then, what helps you overcome temptation? I’ve found it is better to enjoy one serving of my favorite treat than buying the whole bag.