A traveler set up a tent in the wilderness. He snuggled under his covers for his night’s sleep. The night became cold and his camel poked his nose into the tent. The owner asked the camel what he was doing and the camel replied that it was cold outside and if he could only put his nose inside the tent, he would warm up and then spend the rest of the night outside. The owner agreed to allow the camel to place his nose inside the tent because, after all, the camel’s request made sense and it was only his nose inside the tent. There was still plenty of room for the traveler.
Soon the camel asked, “I’m still cold. Could I please place my head inside your tent? I will warm up soon and then spend the rest of the night outside.” The traveler considered the request. He didn’t want his camel to be cold so, once again, he granted the camel’s wish because, after all, it was only his head and there was still room for the traveler inside the tent.
After several minutes, the camel said, “May I please place my front feet inside your tent? They are so cold out here. If only I can warm my feet for a few minutes, then I promise I will spend the rest of the night outside.”
The traveler thought about it. There would be less room in the tent, but it was cold and he believed the camel’s promise to spend the rest of the night outside as long as he could warm his feet. The traveler allowed the camel to place his feet inside the tent.
Not long after, the camel asked, “Can I take just a few steps inside? I’m sure I’ll warm up and then I’ll definitely spend the rest of the night outside.”
By now the traveler was feeling crowded inside the tent, but he consented to the camel’s request.
After 30 minutes, the camel took a few more steps inside the tent. Before the traveler realized it, the camel had entered completely inside the tent and the traveler’s only option was to go outside and leave the camel inside the tent. So the owner spent the night outside in the cold, filled with regret that he had allowed the camel to first place his nose inside the tent.
And so it is with Satan. He doesn’t jump into our lives, we allow him in step-by-step, bit-by-bit. No one wakes up and decides to commit adultery that very day. It starts with impure thoughts. If we fan those thoughts by accessing pornography or frequenting online chat rooms, more likely than not, we’ll next begin an improper relationship, until we finally commit adultery. If we have an impure thought and immediately thrust it from our mind, we’ll probably not follow the path that leads to infidelity.
Satan isn’t satisfied with just a few followers. He’s greedy, he wants all of us.
And, he’s been practicing his game for so long he’s extremely good at it. He can deceive us into thinking that good is evil and evil is good. He can trick us into justifying our behavior. He can, and will, lead us carefully down to hell before he abandons us to live with the consequences of our actions. It only starts with a nose inside the tent .
In my next post, I’ll discuss ways to smack that nose and get it out of our tents. Stay tuned . . . .
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