On the way to his fishing spot, he stopped off and bought some worms at the local gas station to use as bait. He fished all morning and was having a great time! By about 11:00a.m. the worms that he had bought at the store had run out and he didn’t have any money to go get more ones, so he decided to look around the banks of the river to see if he could find some on the bank.
To his surprise, he found a whole community of worms just a few yards from his fishing spot. But he noticed that these worms were a bit different than the other worms that he had purchased. But in his mind, he just thought, “Well, these aren’t the PROFESSIONAL worms like the store has! These are just regular worms.”
So, he spent a few more hours fishing with these new worms. After a bit however, he noticed that his hands were starting to swell a bit and he was having a tuff time breathing. He didn’t think much about it but decided to make it a day’s work and ride his bike home and tell his mom.
When he came home and showed his mom his wrists and forearms. He told her about the “new” worms he found. She also noticed that her baby boy was wheezing with every breath. Her motherly instincts were in full swing and she immediately she took him to hospital.
Three hours later the boy died.
The entire town was shocked by this devastation. What they found to be the cause of death was startling.
They went back to the place where the boy was fishing to investigate. They observed his footprints next to several hundred worms. However, taking a closer look at these worms, they discovered they were not worms at all. They were baby copperhead snakes.
The coroner’s report came back and said that because of the size of the copperheads, one bite wouldn’t have killed him. Two bites wouldn’t have killed him. But over the course of the afternoon, the boy accumulated thousands of little bites.
That’s what Satan wants to convince you with your life. He says, one time won’t hurt you. It’s not that bad. But time after time after time, it will eventually lead to death.
If you see a full-grown copperhead snake, you will immediately back away. Why? Because you see the danger ahead and think to yourself, “If I go any further, I will probably get bit and possibly die.”
But baby copperheads look so cute and innocent.
Let me give you a fact: 10 out of 10 baby copperheads grow up to be big copperheads…unless they are killed.
There’s been a mountain of books written on temptation and how to overcome it. I would suggest reading them all. Multiple times.
We are told that “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light”1. Therefore, we are to know the “schemes of our enemy”2 and commanded to “put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.”3
The reason why the Scriptures are so clear on this topic is because we have an enemy who hates us. Hates our work. And will stop at nothing to derail and destroy us.
Jesus says describes it this way: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”4
The thief, our enemy, wants nothing more than to steal your joy, kill your dream and destroy your reputation so that you’re disqualified and alone.
When I first became a Christian at the age of 16, my mentor had me write this in sentence on the front cover of my Bible. I’ve never forgotten it. I pray that you will do the same.
“Sin will take you further than you wanted to go, keep you longer than you wanted to stay and cost you more than you wanted to pay.”
It is a deadly cycle. It is a destructive cycle. And yet, it’s a preventable cycle!
Once you learn this cycle, and teach it to others, you’ll be able to see compounding victories in your life!
Note: I shared this story with the KC Chiefs players at our chapel service recently and a few of the guys about fell over when I showed the picture of the full grown snake. It was priceless! These guys who were the size of refrigerators were all backing up in fright at the sight of this picture!
1 2 Corinthians 11:14 (NIV)
2 2 Corinthians 2:11 (NIV)
3 Ephesians 6:11 (NIV)
4 John 10:10 (NIV)