Excitement was mounting as the Junior High group lined up for the race. The rules were: Run to the table at the end of the gym, eat the caramel apple as fast as you can, then run back to this end of the gym. Go!
The volume magnified as the teammates cheered each other on. The six teammates reached the table and bit large chunks out of the caramel apples anticipating the victory! Chomping and chewing, spitting and drooling, they eagerly consumed their treat.
But the look on one team member’s face was priceless.
Being creative and spontaneous is a prerequisite for entertaining Junior High age. Therefore staying one step in front of them is mandatory. That afternoon as we dipped apples in the melted caramel we also decided to dip one onion. The game would take an expected turn on that unsuspecting team.
True to form, he started gagging and sputtering and was the last one back to his team.
I recall that story when I am enticed by the enemy to something or someone that appears real but is actually a hoax. For example:
· A new job that seemed to have all the bells and whistles, exciting and fulfilling only to find out the boss was unethical and falsified documents.
· A newly purchased car that was beautiful on the outside appeared well maintained only to find the opposite when you drove it away.
· A friend you thought you could trust but found out otherwise when actually heard them talking behind your back and then they lied about it.
Even worse, is when I realize that like the caramel, I too use various things to cover up what is on the inside:
· Pride covers my insecurity.
· Anger covers my hurt.
· Joy covers my discontentment.
· Conceit covers my self-doubt.
· Fear covers my dreams.
For years I have been more concerned for what others saw of me than what was inside me. I am learning that the inner condition of my heart is much more important.
1 Peter 3:4: “You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.”