Becoming an empty nester last year wreaked havoc on my life and marriage.
When our kids left, it exposed some emotional insecurities that the busyness of raising children distracted me from. Once those fears and inadequacies began to surface however, I looked to my husband, instead of the Lord, to satisfy my inmost longings.
But recently I remembered a verse from I Corinthians 10:13: “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide an escape, so that you can stand up under it.” Although I’d always liked this verse that I’d memorized years ago, like many things of faith, it didn’t meet me profoundly or personally until life started to unravel.
But the Spirit didn’t just remind me of this verse; He reframed it. He helped me realize we aren’t just tempted to vape or drink, but also to be jealous, afraid, easily offended, and judgmental. I was being seized by so much temptation and hadn’t even realized it. But I wondered,
would His “way out” help?
I’m learning it does, but only to the extent that my trust in God’s faithfulness continually deepens. A way out, when I’m offended or threatened by someone pretty, isn’t telling myself to stop being hurt or jealous. It’s not trying to convince myself I’m awesome. It’s trusting that God always loves, delights in, and wants to protect me (regardless of whether I think I deserve it or not).
God’s way out also helps because I Corinthians 10:13 says He’ll help me stand up under the weight of my temptation. It doesn’t say the escape from feeling anxious or annoyed happens quickly or easily. But when I’ve asked God to show me a way out and trusted that He would when I didn’t feel or see Him, He’s shown up mysteriously and unconventionally. He’s started healing my insecurities and satisfying my inmost longings. Why?
Because that’s what a faithful Father does.