Testing and temptation

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Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows
(John 16:33; NLT).

1. God tests us,
But he doesn’t tempt us,
Tries us,
But he doesn’t lure.

2. He shows us
Jesus’ ways of coping,
So we learn
How to endure.

3. Temptation comes
When our desires entice,
Then drag, us
To the place

4. Where they give birth
To sinful acts —
But God helps us resist,
Through grace.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me
(Philippians 4:13; NKJV).


References

1. He tests me (Job 23:10; NLT).

[He] tests the heart and mind (Jeremiah 11:20; ESV).

When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone (James 1:13; NIV).

2. For Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness, see: Matthew 4:1-11; NLT.

He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth (Isaiah 53:7; NLT).

The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure (1 Corinthians 10:13; NLT).

3. Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away (James 1:14; NLT).

4. These desires give birth to sinful actions (James 1:15; NLT).

Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm (Ephesians 6:13; NASB).

My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9; NLT).

You come again

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He will come again (Hebrews 9:28; NLT).

1. Lord,
You come again each day,
To see if we ignore you,
Or perceive you.

2. Lord,
You cross our path each day,
To see if we reject you,
Or receive you.

3. Lord,
You speak to us each day,
To see if we dismiss you,
Or obey you.

4. Lord,
You test us out each day,
To see if we support you,
Or betray you.

5. Lord,
You visit us each day
In everyone: the stranger,
And the friendless.

6. Lord,
You challenge us each day
In those we fear, and those
Whose needs are endless.

7. Lord,
You call to us each day
In foreigner and neighbour,
Old and young.

8. Lord,
You come again each day,
For you live in us all:
God’s much-loved Son.

Suddenly their eyes were opened and they recognised him
(Luke 24:31; NLT).

Image: nothingwavering.com, Yandex


References

1. They may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand (Mark 4:10; RSV).

2. He came to his own, and his own people, did not receive him (John 1:11; CSB).

3. If you love me, obey my commandments (John 14:15; NLT).

Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts (Hebrews 4:7; NIV).

4. The Lord your God is testing you to see if you truly love him with all your heart and soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NLT).

Jesus knew who would betray him (John 13:11; NLT).

5. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing so some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it (Hebrews 13:2; NIV).

6. Love your enemies! (Matthew 5:44; NLT).

7. Show love to foreigners (Deuteronomy 10:19; NLT).

Love your neighbour (Luke 10:27; NLT).

Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children (Matthew 19:14; NLT).

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

8. Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us (Colossians 3:11; NLT).

This is my beloved Son (Luke 9:35; NKJV).

One day at a time

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Don’t worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will bring its own worries.
Today’s trouble is enough for today
(Matthew 6:34; NLT).

Lord,

1. May I live one day at a time,
And forgive one hurt at a time.

2. May I learn one rule at a time,
And discern one truth at a time.

3. May I meet one test at a time,
And defeat one sin at a time.

4. May I face one fear at a time,
And embrace one hope at a time.

5. May I grieve one loss at a time,
And receive one grace at a time.

6. May I sow one seed at a time,
And go on, one step at a time.


References

1. Don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today (Matthew 6:34; NLT).

If another believer sins, rebuke that person; then if there is repentance, forgive. Even if that person wrongs you seven times a day and each time turns again and asks forgiveness, you must forgive (Luke 17:4; NLT).

2. Learn that the Most High rules over the kingdoms of the world (Daniel 4:25; NLT).

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me” (John 14:6; NLT).

3. The Lord your God is testing you to see if you truly love him with all your heart and soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NLT).

Get your sins out of my sight. Give up your evil ways (Isaiah 1:16; NLT).

4. My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine (Matthew 26:39; NIV).

You have been called to one glorious hope for the future (Ephesians 4:4; NLT).

5. I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss (Lamentations 3:20; NLT).

We will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most (Hebrews 4:16; NLT).

6. The farmer plants seed by taking God’s word to others (Mark 4:14; NLT).

If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me (Luke 9:23; NLT).

Anyone who puts a hand to the plough and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God (Luke 9:62; NLT).

Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble (Proverbs 3:23; NIV).

According to your will

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This is the confidence we have in approaching God:
that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us
(1 John 5:14; NIV).

Lord,

1. May I treat myself with love
According to your will,
Sharing all I feel with you
As I face each new test.

2. May I capture all my thoughts
According to your will,
Changing judgements into love –
Then I’ll have done my best.

3. May I speak the truth in love
According to your will,
Choosing all my words with care,
Though sometimes I’ll be blamed.

4. May I do all things with love
According to your will,
Serving you with all my heart –
Then I won’t be ashamed.


References

1. Love your neighbour as yourself (Leviticus 19:18; NLT).

You desire honesty from the womb (Psalm 51:6; NLT).

Since he himself has gone through suffering and testing, he is able to help us when we are being tested (Hebrews 2:18; NLT).

2. We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5; NIV).

Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For […] the standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged (Matthew 7:1-2; NLT).

We have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16; NLT).

I have always tried my best to let wisdom guide my thoughts (Ecclesiastes 7:23; NLT).

3. We will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ (Ephesians 4:15; NLT).

I have many aggressive enemies; they hate me without reason (Psalm 38:19; NLT).

4. Do everything with love (1 Corinthians 16:14; NLT).

Serve the Lord with all your heart (1 Samuel 12:20; NIV).

Let me not be ashamed; let not my enemies triumph over me (Psalm 25:2; NKJV).

Let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in you (Psalm 25:20; NKJV).

You understand

With thanks to Walter Rane

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows
(John 16:33; NLT).

1. You understand our struggles
And misfortunes;
You understand our failures,
And our fears.

2. You understand our losses
And afflictions;
You understand our anguish,
And our tears.

3. You understand our secrets
And temptations;
You understand our lives –
Each bitter pill.

4. You understand the tests
We must endure, Lord,
For you have shared them all –
And share them still.


References

1. He made their hearts, so he understands everything they do (Psalm 33:15; NLT).

The Lord searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought (1 Chronicles 28:9; NIV).

2. When Mary arrived and saw Jesus, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died” […] Then Jesus wept. The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him!” (John 11:32,35-6; NLT).

Being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground (Luke 22:44; NIV).

3. He knows the secrets of every heart (Psalm 44:21; NLT).

Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil (Luke 4:1-2; NIV).

If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine (Matthew 26:39; NLT).

They also gave me gall for my food, and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink (Psalm 69:21; NKJV).

4. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all the same testings we do (Hebrews 4:15; NLT).

In all their suffering he also suffered (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).

Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows (Isaiah 53:4; NIV).

Search me, Lord

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Search me, O God, and know my heart (Psalm 139:23; NLT).

1. Search me, Lord,
Then live within,
And help me fight
Each urge to sin.

2. Search my mind,
I beg you; stay
To help me keep
Mean thoughts at bay.

3. Search my heart,
Remain; invest
In me, and help me
Face each test.

4. Search my soul,
Make it your home,
Then, Lord, I’ll be
Your flesh and bone.


References

1. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them (1 John 4:16; NIV).

Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak (Mark 14:38; NLT).

2. I, the Lord, search the heart and examine the mind (Jeremiah 17:10; NIV).

We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5; NIV).

3. The Lord tests the heart (Proverbs 17:3; NLT).

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

4. The word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12; NIV).

Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them” (John 14:23; NLT).

All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it (1 Corinthians 12:27; NLT).

The Spirit of God lives in you (1 Corinthians 3:16; NLT).

Every time I stray

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The gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult
(Matthew 7:14; NLT).

1. Father,
Every time I stray
Beyond your narrow, testing path,
Please guide me to your sacred way,
And save me from your righteous wrath.

2. Father,
Every time I roam
Away from your parched, desert trail,
Please seek me out, and bring me home,
Forgiving me each time I fail.

3. Father,
Every time I fall
From your steep, lonely, mountain track,
Please rescue me; Lord, hear my call,
And carry my weak spirit back.

4. Father,
Every time I drift
Far from my faith along the road,
Please stay with me, recall your gift
Of Christ, and help me bear my load.

5. Father,
Every time I lose
All sense of you within my soul,
Please whisper gently; don’t accuse:
Be patient, Lord, and make me whole.


References

1. Small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life (Matthew 7:13-14; NIV).

The Lord your God is testing you to see if you truly love him with all your heart and soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NLT).

2. It was I who rescued you from Egypt and led you through the desert for forty years (Amos 2:10; NLT).

I will search for my lost ones who strayed away, and I will bring them safely home again (Ezekiel 34:16; NLT).

3. The paths they take will become slippery. They will be chased through the dark, and there they will fall (Jeremiah 23:12; NLT).

If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them gets lost, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others in the wilderness and go to search for the one that is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he will joyfully carry it home on his shoulders (Luke 15:4-5; NLT).

4. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way (Isaiah 53:6; NIV).

God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16; NLT).

5. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? (Psalm 22:1; NLT).

He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed (Isaiah 53:5; RSV).

Teach me, Lord

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1. Teach me, Lord,
To follow in your footsteps,
So I may grow, through prayer,
Much more like you.

2. Train me, Lord,
To face each test with courage,
For then I will rejoice
In all I do.

3. Help me, Lord,
To carry my cross daily,
Thanking you,
No matter what you send.

4. Guide me, Lord,
Through death’s dark, lonely valley,
So I may rest in you
Beyond life’s end.

Image: Johannes Plenio, Pixabay

References

1. Teach me your ways, O Lord (Psalm 86:11; NLT).

Pray continually (1 Thessalonians 5:17; NIV).

The Lord – who is the Spirit – makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image (2 Corinthians 3:18; NLT).

2. I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go (Psalm 32:8; RSV).

I will restore the crushed spirit of the humble and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts (Isaiah 57:15; NLT).

Rejoice always (1 Thessalonians 5:16; NIV).

3. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy (Psalm 28:7; NLT).

Then he [Jesus] said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23; NLT).

Give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18; NIV).

The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised (Job 1:21; NIV).

4. Your hand will guide me, and your strength support me (Psalm 139:10; NLT).

Even when I walk through the dark valley of death, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me (Psalm 23:4; NLT, alternative translation).

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you (Psalm 116:7; NIV).

Rest in God alone, my soul (Psalm 62:5; CSB).

Pierce my side

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He was pierced for our transgressions (Isaiah 53:5; NIV).

The word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword,
it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow;
it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12; NIV).

1. Pierce my side, Lord,
Enter in,
And help me fight
Each urge to sin.

2. Pierce my mind
And come to stay;
Prompt me to keep
Mean thoughts at bay.

3. Pierce my heart, Lord,
Lodge there; rest;
And strengthen me
To face each test.

4. Pierce my soul;
Make it your home;
Then I will be
Your flesh and bone.


References

1. One of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water (John 19:34; NIV).

Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak (Mark 14:38; NLT).

2. We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5; NIV).

3. The pain will be so bad it will pierce your heart (Jeremiah 4:18; NET).

Peter’s words pierced their hearts, and they said to him and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?” (Acts 2:37; NLT).

The Lord tests the heart (Proverbs 17:3; NLT).

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

4. A sword will pierce your very soul (Luke 2:35; NLT). 

Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them” (John 14:23; NLT).

All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it (1 Corinthians 12:27; NLT).

I admit

Photo: fabio_arezende

Lord,

1. I admit
That your way
Is the best.

2. I commit
To loving
Your dear Son.

3. I submit
To every trial
And test.

4. I’m unfit –
Yet you and I
Are one.

References

1. I admit that I follow the Way (Acts 24:14; NLT).


God’s way is perfect (2 Samuel 22:31; NLT).

2. Into your hands I commit my spirit (Psalm 31:5; NIV).

Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. We believe, and we know you are the Holy One of God (John 6:68-9; NLT).

3. Submit to God, and you will have peace (Job 22:21; NLT).

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NIV).

4. I am not fit to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals (Mark 1:7; NASB).

You are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28; NLT)

My beloved is mine and I am his (Song of Songs 2:16; NIV).