13 No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.
1 Cor 10:13 NRSV
One of the great temptations to fail is to choose to continue to act the same way we always have but hope for a different outcome. Indeed, the familiar has its charm even if we know we will end up hurting. In a manner of speaking, we fall in love with our temptations. As we dwell on them in our imaginations, they seem bigger, stronger and more irresistible. There is a window somewhere we can open and crawl out of into a new day, but we are distracted looking at that huge, juicy temptation to spend what we don’t have, eat what we don’t need, criticize those we should encourage and on an on. Our besetting sins are familiar, in some ways attractive but also a trap we need out of.
We sometimes even collude to fail with our friends. If you tell a friend that no one could possibly resist that temptation, perhaps they will tell you the same about one of yours. If I excuse you, you will excuse me and we can both struggle forever and stay the same!
Jesus Christ came to set us free and Paul shows us how to claim our freedom. In one verse (1 Cor. 10:13) he both deflates our rather bizarre notions about how awful our temptations are and reminds us that God is faithful. So when we are faced with temptation do not dwell on how huge the temptation is. Instead, ask God to show you the window of escape into His future for your life. “God is faithful.”