“Take a puff.”
I nervously held the cigarette and inhaled. The acrid smoke burned my throat and I violently coughed. No more for me. My juvenile delinquent foray into cigarette smoking ended as quickly as it began. My neighbor had come over with a pack of cigarettes and dared me to try one. Wishing to appear as tough as a nine-year old boy could appear, I accepted the challenge.
“So now you’ve got cancer.”
“What?” I abruptly dropped my cigarette.
“Yeah…it’s like a super tiny pinpoint in your lungs. The more you smoke, the bigger it will get.”
I was frightened. Is this how cancer starts? No way! I will never, ever smoke again!
It is amusing to recall this erudite medical evaluation rendered by another nine year old boy. Even if he was correct, there would be absolutely no way to prove that cancer was present. No one would know. However, there was one truth, the action that I initiated that day if continued, could definitely lead to cancer.
Isn’t this like sin?
But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
James 1:14-15 (ESV)
Sin simply doesn’t just appear. It begins as an urge or desire. If it stops there with no action taken, there is no sin. However, this is far easier said than done, as I can easily attest. I never smoked again but I have given in to my desires and allowed myself to sin with appalling frequency. A tiny pinpoint of sin can quickly grow into a cancerous growth that overtakes my entire being, sapping my will and desire to change and repent. The only solution is to cling to the promises of God through faith in Jesus Christ. Only He can give me the strength to resist the beguiling nature of my lusts and desires and replace it with the forgiving love of my Lord and Savior.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.