The Word — Overcoming the red flags of life

Published 12:31 pm Friday, September 30, 2022

God is faithful: He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. — 1 Corinthians 10:13

Recently, the NFL football season made its debut. As usual, there were predicted winners and losers. However, an aspect of football games parallels life’s journey. And that is, follow the rules, or there is a penalty flag. Also, during the game, there are opportunities and temptations not to follow the rules to get the competitive edge, but if you break the rules, the penalty flag will indeed appear. 

One may not know the rules of football or even care about the game. But for every believer, there are red flags of life, which can cause setbacks or destruction if not avoided. Generally, the most damning and dangerous are the “temptations” of life’s journey. You can encounter them in every facet of life. Temptations stand ready to beckon and lure the believer into trouble through little “no harm” matters and having them believe the false narrative that everybody is doing it, so it must be alright. Such an attitude toward red flags can subject one to possible embarrassment, disdain, or ultimate ruin. Yes, the temptation will entice you to eat too many sweets while suffering from diabetes, disregard your calorie count and pile on the pounds, but we all know that there are many more dangerous red flags. Some will lead you to an arena whereby you cannot find the antidote to a full recovery. That is where the red flags of life want us to reside.

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However, the good news for the believer is that there is a stopgap for overcoming red flags. That is, knowing and believing that God is faithful in all things. Not only does God provide for us our basic needs, but he also watches over us in every respect. God’s faithfulness also provides the stopgap along the daily journey of life, which can cause us to be overcomers despite any temptation we may encounter. 

His faithfulness will guard us beyond the most egregious urge to yield. Belief in His Word can overcome any degree of heat in the kitchen. So, Paul writes to the church at Corinth and affirms to them and the Christian community that we are all endowed with a divine stopgap defense. It allows us to stay clear of red flags by choosing to exit the ill-advised decision or potential danger by proceeding through the escape route God provided for our safety and wellbeing. But remember, it’s a choice to use the escape route or continue walking amongst the red flags. 

Rev. Dr. James Taylor III is the pastor of the Jericho Baptist Church in Farmville. His email address is: