Don’t Get Sucked In

Proverbs 14:29 ESV — Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly.

If you saw someone laying a trap for you, would it be wise to walk right into it? That would be stupid. So why do people get sucked into (or suckered into) foolish arguments and fights so easily? Could it be they don’t see the trap?

PRIDE

Pride blinds us to many things. It makes us feel invincible. It is the chief reason why people get into quarrels and fights. When you have an inflated view of yourself you are very touchy and sensitive. The least thing can set you off. This person is out of control. No wonder God hates pride.

Proverbs 16:18 KJV “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.”

People easily fall into all kinds of traps due to arrogance (haughtiness), including the fussing, cussing, and fighting trap. In order to not get sucked in we must learn the opposite of pride.

HUMILITY

Proverbs 17:28 KJV “Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.”

Zephaniah 2:3 NIV “Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, you who do what he commands. Seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you will be sheltered on the day of the Lord’s anger.”

Proverbs 22:4 KJV “By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, and honour, and life.”

Proverbs 18:12 KJV “Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility.”

Humility is no joke. It brings the very opposite of pride; riches, honor, and life. The funny thing about humility though is when seeking it you sometimes feel like you’re always getting the short end of the stick. Sometimes it feels like the proud of this world are always prospering. These feelings are normal. You’re definitely not alone if you feel or ever felt this way. Asaph once did. Asaph is a servant of God who became envious of the wicked for a brief moment. But he regained his footing. He thought that the care free way of the wicked landed them on easy street. It seemed like they were living it up. But he soon learned that their way wasn’t free from pain as he thought. Read the words of Asaph below and see if you can relate.

Psalms 73:1‭-‬28 ESV “Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart. But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled, my steps had nearly slipped. For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. For they have no pangs until death; their bodies are fat and sleek. They are not in trouble as others are; they are not stricken like the rest of mankind. Therefore pride is their necklace; violence covers them as a garment. Their eyes swell out through fatness; their hearts overflow with follies. They scoff and speak with malice; loftily they threaten oppression. They set their mouths against the heavens, and their tongue struts through the earth. Therefore his people turn back to them, and find no fault in them. And they say, “How can God know? Is there knowledge in the Most High?” Behold, these are the wicked; always at ease, they increase in riches. All in vain have I kept my heart clean and washed my hands in innocence. For all the day long I have been stricken and rebuked every morning. If I had said, “I will speak thus,” I would have betrayed the generation of your children. But when I thought how to understand this, it seemed to me a wearisome task, until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end. Truly you set them in slippery places; you make them fall to ruin. How they are destroyed in a moment, swept away utterly by terrors! Like a dream when one awakes, O Lord, when you rouse yourself, you despise them as phantoms. When my soul was embittered, when I was pricked in heart, I was brutish and ignorant; I was like a beast toward you. Nevertheless, I am continually with you; you hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. For behold, those who are far from you shall perish; you put an end to everyone who is unfaithful to you. But for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.”

Does what Asaph said sound familiar? Asaph almost got sucked into the trap of believing that the wicked have it better than the righteous. But as he meditated on the matter he saw how wrong he was. This type of thinking can produce depression, quarrels, and fights. It’s called envy. Envy is a burning desire for something we believe will be beneficial to us. Usually it’s desiring things others have that we feel we deserve too. If not careful we can become trapped by envy.

James 4:1 ISV “Where do those fights and quarrels among you come from? They come from your selfish desires that are at war in your bodies, don’t they?”

We must believe God when he says:

1 Timothy 6:7-8 NIV “For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. [8] But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.”

Brothers and sisters let’s keep fighting not to get sucked in.

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