Several months back, we had to power cycle our HVAC unit, and that means climbing into the attic. It is something I had done many times over my life. It was almost a right of passage as a young boy.
The first time you climb into the attic, it can be a little intimidating. There is something about climbing up that rickety ladder into that dark, cold unknown space that can make your heart beat a little faster.
I have a young son, and this was going to be his day to climb into the attic for the first time. He was going to experience the trial of the attic ladder. Needless to say, he was not as enthusiastic as I was. I thought it would be an adventure, something new, exciting!
He did not!
He saw the ladder and how shaky it looked. He realized the height. He saw the darkness in the space overhead. And none of these things seemed very inviting. He was about to experience a trial. A testing of his fortitude.
I saw it as an opportunity for him to trust his father.
I had done this before. I knew there was nothing to fear. I knew the ladder was strong enough for him. I knew there was a light switch just inside the attic to brighten the space. I knew there were floorboards to give him good footing. I knew that I would have my hand on his back as he climbed and would not let him fall. As his father, I knew that he could do this. And I was going to give him an opportunity to learn that about himself.
With much coaching and encouragement, he finally inched his way up the ladder, into the attic. He found the light switch. He power cycled the HVAC. He returned to the safety of the hall floor without a scratch.
He has gone through the trial and succeeded! He was tested and found worthy! One more step in the process of becoming like his father.
Matthew 6:13 can be a hard verse to understand and follow. Is Jesus really going to LEAD me into temptation? Is he really going to make me go through this? I don’t understand. I thought he loved me? I thought he only wanted good for me? I don’t understand. How could a good God not only allow, but lead me into temptation?
Commenting on this verse, John Trapp said “Temptations are either of probation (and so God tempts men) or of perdition, and so the devil.”
Temptations from God will demonstrate our character. They will highlight our faith. They will reveal our trust. They will build endurance. They will transform our view of God. They will mold us into his image. They will shape our relationship with God and man.
Temptations from God are for our good. They reflect the heart of a loving God who desires to see us transformed into the image of His son.
Pray that we are NOT led into temptation. But when we are, pray for deliverance.