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Week 3 Devotional | The Fall

Updated: Jul 17, 2023

“Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness will find life, righteousness, and honor.”

- Proverbs 21:21

Wisdom is doing today what your future self will thank you for. That’s easy to say when everything is going right, but it's not so easy when life gets tough. What do you do, what do you think, what do you say when life gets hard?


Late NBA legend Kobe Bryant was working with a group of high school athletes in China, and he made the athletes run a drill called 17s, a grueling drill in which you have 1 minute to run 17 times from sideline to sideline. It is a challenging drill that is all about grit and mental toughness; it is tough. If they all made the drill, they would get a pair of Kobe Bryant shoes, but Kobe said, “If you don’t touch the line, you get nothing.”


One kid did not touch the line, so they all missed out on getting the shoes, but the story doesn’t stop there. Kobe gave the kid the opportunity to redeem himself. He made the kid run 3 suicides in a row, and on the last one, Kobe ran with the athlete.


Kobe had an expectation, he held all the athletes accountable, and when one kid didn’t meet that standard, he didn’t let them off the hook, and he didn’t kick him off the team or out of the gym; instead, Kobe ran with him.


All of our actions have consequences and rewards.


Over the last couple of weeks, I have written a devotional about the story of our world's creation and the creation of man. After God created the world and everything in it, He said that it was ‘very good.’


But in Genesis 3, Adam and Eve made a terrible decision that negatively affected the world forever.


In Genesis 3:1, the devil came to the garden in the form of a snake and tricked Eve into eating fruit from the forbidden tree of the knowledge of good and evil. She ate the fruit, and then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it (Genesis 3:6).


When Adam and Eve ate the fruit, God’s good intention in creation was turned upside down, and things that were designed to work smoothly and without pain now involved pain. Pain is the essence of the curse that came with Adam and Eve not listening to God.


God said to Eve, “I will make your pains in childbearing very severe; with painful labor, you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.”


God then said to Adam, “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil, you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow, you will eat your food until you return to the ground since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust, you will return.”


Adam and Eve were punished by God for eating the fruit from the forbidden tree like the athletes were punished by Kobe for not touching the line (obviously, Adam and Eve’s actions and punishment were much more severe). But then the Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. God didn’t throw them away but made them clothes to cover them. Kobe didn’t kick the athletes off the court, but Kobe ran with the kid who didn’t touch the line.


Every action either has a consequence or a reward, and the decisions we make can bring either life or death; success or failure. But no matter what, God is with us. Wisdom is choosing that which your future self will thank you for. Pursue and choose righteousness and kindness, and you will find life, righteousness, and honor (Proverbs 21:21).


Choose to do the right thing, no matter how hard it may be. But know, you are worthy. God created man in his own image. And God blessed them. And behold, it was very good (Genesis 1).


THIS WEEK


1 - When is it hard to make the right choice? When is it hardest to choose the thing you know you need to do?


2 - When you know you need to make a choice that isn’t easy, what do your or can you do to make the right choice?


3 - What temptation are you having to deal with this week?


4 - What can you do to overcome that temptation?


Dear God,


I pray that you are with me in every decision that I need to make. I pray that I take the time and do what I need to do to make the right decision, even when it is tough, and I pray that when I do mistakes, you don’t leave me.


Amen.


For a Google docs version of this devotional, click here: The Fall


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