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Christian Counseling - Resisting the Apple in Modern Times

The first woman, Eve, listened to the truth and falsehood spoken by the serpent that the apple (really fruit of unknown origin) would be good for her (become "like God, knowing good and evil"). She concluded it was "good for food," a "delight to the eyes" and "desirable to make one wise" and didn't resist that first bite (Genesis 3:1-6). Thus, the sin nature of all humans was assured and the fall from paradise began. She was unaware of what would happen to her, but it changed everything for the rest of her life and every other human being. Her over trusting and impulsive behavior left her vulnerable.

Today, there are many apples offered to us or that we conjure up in our own minds that have great appeal and to which we, as Eve, are often blind to the consequences. Examples include:
           
                Technology that can serve to connect people, but also puts a PDA between two
                        people communicating, thereby eliminating face-to-face interaction and limiting
                        emotional responses, development of relational skills and one's ability to fully evaluate
                        communication.
                Dependence on government entitlements; that is, for those who refuse to work hard, desire to
                        have someone else take care of them and become self-sufficient.
                Living with a person before marriage. Statistically, these couples don't fair as well as
                         married couples.
                Addictive (physical or psychological) substances and behaviors (sex, alcohol, food,
                         drugs, spending, etc.) that can sneak up on a person and imprison them.

We all have a tendency to be swayed by others to think, feel and act in ways that we secretly, partially or unconsciously desire. Others can help us find the courage to do good or evil. The independent thinker fully evaluates a new idea or action before making the leap. In great measure, a Christian is led by the Spirit, scripture and his or her conscience, but knows any conscience can be misinformed. Seeking understanding, knowledge and wisdom in self, others and God are precursors to decision-making that help ensure a positive outcome and minimize negative consequences.

However, like Eve, we sometimes ignore information we have previously received from God or others who know us and we trust. We do this so that we can do what we really want, even if we know it's not best or perhaps even wrong. The consequences of these choices may not be grasped until sometime in the distant future. Delaying gratification is, at first, difficult because "now" matters more than "then" (the future).

The heart committed to doing what is best, right and good is a heart of integrity, righteousness, confidence and peace. Whittle away at those things by poor decisions and you guarantee future hardships, some of which cannot be calculated or predicted. Let wisdom guide you. Get it at any cost. Become your ideal self. It starts today, in your next decision. Live it out the best you can for 30 days and see if your life is not better for it.

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