May 2

Grabbing the Brass Ring

I Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

In some carousels at older amusement parks, there was a game that the riders could play. There was a brass ring hanging on the outside that could be grabbed by the rider as he or she went around. Being able to grab the ring was often a combination of looking for it, good timing, and placement , and the reward was often something like a free ride. “Grabbing the brass ring” is a phrase that has now made its way into our common language.

Finding that “way of escape” that the Lord promises to give us in temptation is like that. Finding the way out is like grabbing that ring.

For one, we have to look for the way out that He promises That involves faith that it’s there for us in the first place, and a heart that wants to find the way. Many of us don’t want to escape the temptation for a while, and we can’t blame God if we miss the way out. Like those hoping to grab the brass ring, we have to know that the way of escape is there for the taking, and we have to look for it with anticipation and eagerness.

Timing was key for those looking for the ring. Depending on the movement of the “horse” they were on, the rider might be too high or too low, or close to the ring or too far away when the rider came around and saw the ring. There was usually only a right moment or two during the rise where all the circumstances came together to allow the rider to grab the ring.

God’s way of escape is often like that. Yes, God is incredibly merciful and full of grace. But His way of escape from the temptation may not last forever, nor always be easily available.

But He promises to give us the way. It’s up to us to look for it, and to locate it and grab it. The brass ring didn’t fall into the hands of the person looking for it—he or she had to grab it. It’s often the same with our God-given opportunities to escape our temptations. God may open a door, but we have to walk through it. The moment of escape may present itself, but we have to take it.

The next time you’re faced with temptation, start looking around for the way of escape. He promises that it will be there. Then don’t presume on His grace, and take advantage of the way out as soon as possible. Only heaven will reveal the pain you’ll avoid. But the joy of obedience will be your portion in this life!

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for this beautiful promise. Help me to get better and better at seeing Your way of escape for me, and help me to move quickly and take advantage of the way You provide.

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