Control your appetites, control your life

Good morning everyone,
Our theme for this month: “Personal Responsibility”
Our Bible verse for today: “Samson went down to Timnah and saw there a young Philistine woman. When he returned, he said to his father and mother, ‘I have seen a Philistine woman in Timnah; now get her for me as my wife.’” Judges 14:1-2 (NIV)
Our thought for today: “Control your appetites, control your life”
This morning I want to continue our thinking from yesterday regarding Moses’ challenge to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 30:19 to choose God’s way or the way of the world. Each of us chooses the path we will walk through life, and that choice will determine how our life unfolds. “Choose your path, choose your life”.
But far too often we allow our appetites to dictate our choices. We allow the things we are hungry for, the things we lust after and deeply desire, to guide our thinking and to determine our choices. Samson was a man who was controlled by his appetites. On the one hand, he was extraordinarily gifted by God. He had amazing strength, he had good looks, he had a charismatic personality, and he inspired trust and loyalty in the people. They even appointed him to be a judge over Israel.
But on the other hand, Samson was a man of raging appetites and out of control emotions. He allowed lust, greed, anger, and revenge to dominate his thinking and to determine his choices. As a result, he lived a short, turbulent life that ended badly. You can read his story in the Old Testament book of Judges, chapters 13-16. Samson’s potential for doing good and for honoring the Lord and for blessing people was never fulfilled because of his bad choices. Repeatedly he chose the ways of the world over the ways of God. He allowed his appetites to control his choices, and ultimately to determine the course of his life.
I knew a young man like that once. He was a talented singer, songwriter, and musician. He led music for the church youth group and he had the potential to not only be a worship leader, but perhaps a Christian recording artist. But he made the bad choice to leave the world of Christian music and he went to Hollywood instead to try to make it in the world of secular music and movies. Long story short, he succumbed to many of the bad influences in that world and he lost his way. I performed his funeral not too many years later. Like Samson, he chose the ways of the world over the ways of God, and the ending was tragic.
It really is true that if you control your appetites, you control your life. But how can we control our appetites? We’ll think about that tomorrow. Choosing God and His ways over the world and its ways is always the best choice.
God bless,
Pastor Jim
Copyright © 2022 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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