Key Bible Verse: Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. (2 Timothy 2:22, NIV) Dig Deeper: Romans 6:6-14
Here are a [few] big questions to help you discern whether or not a desire is evil and sinful: Do you use the person or thing as a way to escape reality [or] medicate pain in your life? When you do so, do you find the decision was, in the end, irrational and destructive in light of the bigger goals in your life? Are you mad at God? Do you [use this person or thing as a replacement for God]? Do you feel like this "god" has somehow let you down?
The only way out of the mess of our sinful desires is to reorient and realign our whole lives around God and what he is up to on earth. When the time comes that we see God and his loving, grace-filled invitation to be his cooperative friends in this life and the life to come, we will have then found the potential to disconnect our hearts and intentions from wrong desires. Without such trust in God rooted in deep and sincere belief in his goodness, none of us are likely to [succeed].
Not rejecting but accepting the reality of God is the first step—but even this step is only a potential step. To realize that potential we need to act.
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