It’s not the Stew…it’s You!


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Let me eat some of that red stew, for I am exhausted!

Genesis 25:30

Have you ever heard someone blame a vice for their bad decisions? It could food, drugs, alcohol, or a person—anything that tempts them towards sinful behavior. Understandably, we are tempted every side by ungodly conversations, enticing TV and movie shows, stressful days that make us feel that a drug or alcohol will help us, etc. However, the truth is that problem resides within us and not the object of our desire.

In Genesis 25:29-34 when Esau was dehydrated and severely hungry, his brother happened to be making a tasty and fragrant stew. Jacob used his brother’s vulnerable state to seek out what he always wanted—the birthright of the oldest son. Esau was more driven by resolving his temporary physical desires than his unique and treasured spiritual heritage. It wasn’t the stew itself that comprised this essential choice, it was what was going on within Esau’s heart.

As it was with Esau, it is with us. It’s not the person we are attracted to, not the drugs nor alcohol, and neither is it our unique situations. It’s our flesh that longs to be satisfied regardless of the potential cost to our spiritual, emotional, mental, or physical well-being. We linger at the lies of the devil, we pause at the scenes in a movie, we stay a bit longer than we should in conversations, etc. The desires in our hearts compel us to seek out our own selfish desires rather than to stop and resist being pulled in the wrong direction.

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Yet, there’s hope in Christ. Because of Jesus’ sacrifice, we are empowered by the Holy Spirit to overcome temptation. Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” We are not at the mercy of the cravings of our fleshly desires. Instead, we are given power from God to escape from temptation so that our lives are not adversely impacted by wrong decisions.


Dear Lord, I know it’s not the object of my desire—it’s my own heart that needs to be changed. Help me through the power of Your Holy Spirit and word to overcome this temptation. In Jesus’ name, amen.

In His Service,

Crystal McDowell Signature

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