ODJ: the danger of complacency

July 3, 2015 

READ: 1 Corinthians 10:6-13 

If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall (v.12).

Complacency is one of the biggest dangers for people with severe allergies. I’m a prime example. It had been 10 long years since a severe latex allergy had seriously threatened to end my life. Believe me, it’s terrifying when you suddenly swell up like a balloon and can’t breathe. But then years rolled by and I forgot just how serious an allergic reaction can be.

It didn’t start that way. At first I carried an EpiPen (a first-line injection device for severe allergic reactions) with me at all times. I carefully avoided coming into contact with latex gloves or balloons. But in time my vigilance waned. Slowly I allowed myself to get lulled into a false sense of invincibility. It won’t happen to me again, I naively thought—until it recently threatened to take my life once more.

As believers, we too can become dangerously complacent when it comes to temptation. We can get lulled into thinking we’re above or beyond it. But Paul’s solemn warning to the Christians in Corinth can jolt us back to reality: “If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12).

Paul also wrote that the temptations we face in this world “are no different from what others experience” (v.13). And we can’t afford to get complacent. No matter how long we’ve believed in Christ, how much we’ve matured in our relationship with God or how often we’ve served Jesus, not one of us is immune. If we begin to downplay temptation, we’ll fall flat on our faces.

Fortunately, Paul also offers these encouraging words: “God is faithful.” When temptation comes, He promises to show us a way out (v.13). By His power and prompting, we can overcome the danger of complacency.

—Jeff Olson

365-day-plan: Matthew 7:1-12

Read Luke 22:40 and consider how Jesus told us to resist temptation. 
Do you recall a time when you were doing well, only to give in unexpectedly to temptation? How can you avoid becoming complacent about temptation?