Temptations to do something wrong come disguised very well. If you’ve ever tried to catch a fish, you know that the hook must be hidden inside something deliciously tempting to the fish. That worm—the bait—is perfectly suited to the fish. The devil treats you just like you treat that fish. He knows your needs and weaknesses. He chooses the perfect bait to tempt you. Be on your guard! Under every tempting bit of bait is a sharp hook designed to kill.
Friends can tempt us, without even meaning to. Maybe we’ve spent all our allowance, but a friend says, "Come shopping with me. Just put the clothes on your mom’s credit card." Or maybe we’ve decided that all that caffeine and sugar in our sodas makes us too jittery to sleep, so we give decide to give it up. Then we go for a pizza, and our best girlfriend decides to share her super-sized cola with us. It’s mouth-watering tempting! Both situations—shopping and sipping—look like fun. That’s the bait. And what’s underneath the wiggly worm? An invitation to overspend, go deep in debt, and get grounded. Or an invitation to be a nervous wreck, unable to sleep or study.
Some temptations served up by so-called "friends"—pressure to drink or take drugs—are easier to spot. Be strong and boldly say, "No, thanks." But also be on guard for those sneaky temptations, where the shiny bait disguises a hidden hook. Be alert—and don’t take that bait!