Have you ever found yourself doing something incredibly amazing knowing that what you were doing would eventually lead to consequences shortly after? I for one have experienced that since before I could remember.
Since I was a child, I have been plagued with stomach issues. The pain would come about rapidly and without warning causing grief not only to myself, but to my family as well. I remember one time, we were in the middle of traffic in Beijing, China when my “tummy attacks” happened. I began to black out, have cold sweats, my stomach curled up on itself, and my breathing became labored as the pain intensified. My parents desperately tried to tell the cab driver to find a restroom, flipping through our translation book to no avail. I willed myself to hold on and my prayers have never been so fierce. After years of testing and assumptions, I was finally diagnosed as lactose intolerant. I had to say goodbye to my most favorite things, cheese, ice cream, and pizza!
Although I knew that by eating dairy, I would experience excruciating pain, embarrassment, and a waste of time, I continued to choose to eat dairy. My sisters would chastise me and say, “You’re going to regret it!” My dairy eating choices even wound up in my husband’s wedding vows! “When you have eaten too much cheese and diary, EVEN THOUGH YOU KNOW YOU’RE NOT SUPPOSED TO, I’ll have the Mylanta ready when you are done in the bathroom.”
It wasn’t until one of my moments when I was in regret prayer mode that I realized something. My repetitive dilemmas were not only preventable and repetitive, but were a mirror image of a message that God has for us. The dairy in my life represents temptation. I love dairy with all my heart and would indulge in the moment knowing that later, consequences would follow. The indescribable pain I would feel represents the consequences that come with sin. Daily, we purposefully choose to sin, knowing that what we were doing is wrong in God’s eyes and yet, we choose to “live in the moment” because it feels great at that point in time. It is become a cycle that had been harder to break each passing day.
Thankfully, we have a God who has left us with a book of answers. In 1 Corinthians 10:13, it says, “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape, so that you will be able to endure it.” NASB With God’s guidance, daily prayer, and my love for Him, I know that anything is possible to overcome with the power of God.
Alejandra Rodriguez Clark is an elementary school teacher and currently resides in McAllen, Texas.