Sunday, October 5, 2014

John 17:15 -- On Avoiding Evil

"I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil."
John 17:15

This prayer of Christ I think applies to all of us.  In the world is where we need to be right now.  We're learning and choosing who to become.  But we definitely need some help staying away from the evil.  There is so much good, but often we don't see it because we are focused on a problem, or a negative interaction.  We let outside influences seep into us... changing the way we speak and think about evil sometimes.  We bend so far that we can find ourselves participating in the evil, wondering how we ended up here.
Repentance is the answer to participating in evil, but part of that repentance has to be a chance of perspective and a change of the way we live, or we'll just fall into the same trap we fell into before.  We can learn to see the good, to be wiser about who we spend time with, to refuse to engage in reading or viewing or participating in those outside influences which we know can throw us off track.  Whether other people can stand up to certain temptations or not, as we learn with Joseph and Potiphar's wife, sometimes the wisest thing to do is to know our own weaknesses, and to run away.
Another thing that can help us with evil is prayer.  As Christ prayed to his father for his apostles, and for all of us, we can pray to God all the time, keeping up a mental conversation about what is going on with us.  Having him with us as an additional observer and silent witness to all that we do can help us make better choices.  It can help us make better decisions to discuss our ideas with God.  Reading the scriptures often helps as well.  All of these verses weren't only written for a certain moment in the past, but were planned to help us in the future as well.  They are here for us, and God has an amazing way of helping us to read just the right thing at the right time, when we are open to it.
Today, let's pray to God to keep us from the evil, and let's take action in our lives and make the changes necessary so that with God's help we can stay away.  Let's notice the good, and fill ourselves with that instead. :)

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