1 John 2:15-16 – Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world — the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has done — comes not from the Father but from the world. (NIV)
I was watching an old movie the other night, in which one fellow was giving another fellow a wedding present. The gift was a box of colourful, hand-tied fishing lures, which brought back memories for me. My dad was an avid fisherman who sometimes allowed me to accompany him as he wandered the streams with his rod and reel. I remember being fascinated with his collection of lures. He explained to me how different lures attracted different species, as each lure was tied to resemble a favourite food of that particular fish. I was also intrigued with watching how he would cast the line with the lure attached and then entice the fish to strike by jiggling, tugging, or smoothly reeling the lure back in. The movements would catch the swimmers' eyes, and if they were hungry, they would strike. Then, much to their surprise, they were caught, which usually meant a sad ending for them.
Dad always had a few stories, however, about the big ones found in different streams or ponds. These were fish that were smart enough not to take the bait. Such fish lived long lives, growing bigger and stronger with each season, tempting fishermen for miles around to do their best to find a way to lure, trick, and capture them.
These pleasant memories conjured up in my mind how important it is for Christians of all ages always to be on guard against the lures of this world, which our enemy, the devil, enjoys casting into the ponds and streams of our everyday lives. The Scriptures point us to three such lures: the lure of wanting more and more things, the lure of the flesh, and the lure of pride and arrogance, taking credit unto ourselves for what God has done.
The lures in my dad's fishing kit were very realistic, and many, many fish fell prey to them. Likewise the lures of this world trick and catch many a Christian who is unaware of the dangers they pose. There is a solution, however, to this dilemma, a solution which allows us, as God's people, to grow bigger, stronger, and more mature day by day. The solution is to spend time regularly casting our thoughts into the refreshing stream of the living Word, the Scriptures, so that we may know the difference between the desires of this world and the will of God.
You can be sure that today, the devil will be fishing. So let's make sure that we are, too!
Prayer: Father God, we pray that You will plant in each of our hearts a continual desire to cast our thoughts and minds into the living pool of Your Word. May we make it a daily habit to fish in the pools of Your truth. Bless us with insight and wisdom to understand and know Your will and way, that we might continue to grow in You. In Christ's name, we ask. Amen.