St. Augustine’s influence on Christianity has been immense. His works on theology have been foundational for centuries and his autobiographical Confessions is a classic. Perhaps his influence is all the more powerful when you consider the struggles he had in his life.
Augustine lived in fourth-century North Africa. Early in his life, he was a hot-blooded rebel who was a womanizer and a cult member. He truly lived the low life.
Even after he placed his trust in Christ, his old life continued to chase him. Occasionally, he was faced with the temptation to return to his old ways.
One day he saw an attractive female acquaintance. She invitingly called out to him, but Augustine kept walking. She kept pursuing, calling out, “Augustine! It is I! It is I!”
“Yes, I know,” he replied. “But it is not I.”
Oh, dear friend, God changes lives! Augustine became a great Christian philosopher.
Remember what the Bible says happens when you place your trust I Christ: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are new creations, no longer slaves to what we used to do. We are “dead to sin.” Although we may feel the temptation to give in to these old sins, their power over us is gone.
What is more, God has provided a way to escape the temptation of sin. “God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).
So, when you are tempted, call out to God. He will help you!
“Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted” (Hebrews 2:18).
Where is your greatest temptation? Is it coveting, lust, anger, gossip, or something else? What do you do to withstand temptation? Do you pray for strength, remove yourself from the situation, or get angry with yourself and feel defeated? Ask God for help. He will provide it.
By Vonette Bright, My Heart in His Hands
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