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Breadcrumbs
By derek
9/22/2006 7:29:55 AM
2 Nephi 28:21 — And others will he pacify, and lull them away into carnal security, that they will say: All is well in Zion; yea, Zion prospereth, all is well--and thus the devil cheateth their souls, and leadeth them away carefully down to hell.

Romans 8:17 — And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

I mentioned breadcrumbs in my blog yesterday, so I figured I should put in this entry from my journal a couple months ago, when I first had the insight into Satan's breadcrumbs...

I have allowed Satan to cheat my soul out of so many good experiences. How many times in my life could I have felt the spirit but was beyond feeling? How many times could I have given or offered a blessing, but didn't because I was unworthy? How much could I have learned in the temple if I had been spiritually focused? How much closer could I be to my wife if I had been eternally minded and wanting the same things she did? How many times could I have had the spirit guide me in teaching my children if I had just been able to feel it? Truly I have allowed myself to be cheated out of some awesome experiences. I don't want to lose any more of those experiences. I pray that I can become and remain worthy of those blessings in my life. For that is what I REALLY want.

Satan is SO GOOD at "leading carefully". What a great description of his tactics. As I think of this, I can picture myself, walking down a path in the middle of the woods, perhaps a strait and narrow path even, towards something I really desire. And then I can picture Satan placing little crumbs out in front of me, not right in front of me, but off to the side a bit, just distracting me. He doesn't push me or pull me. But the breadcrumbs just entice me to walk in that direction. I've been walking for a while, after all, and my body is hungry. And even though I know they're distracting me, slowing me down from reaching what I really want, they do taste good, and fill me up, making me feel good, so I continue looking for more. Satan's careful, though, to not put anymore behind me, back where I was on the path. No, he places each one a little more off the path than the last one, a little closer to HIS path, and so almost without thinking, I keep walking toward him, looking for the next crumb. Don't they fill me up? I thought I was satisfied, but I'm still hungry, so I continue on. I can still see the path I was on, so I'm not too worried - I can still get back anytime, I tell myself. Meanwhile, he's not making an all out ambush effort, but simply leading carefully, taking what I'll give him, being VERY careful - he doesn't want to lose me. It doesn't take long before I'm so far into the woods that I've forgotten where I was going in the first place and without realizing it, I've become so focused on my hunger and getting more breadcrumbs that I've lost sight completely of the path I was on. Yet still I continue on, taking more and more crumbs, because after all, they do fill me up don't they? I'm lost now, but at least I'm satisfied aren't I? And they make me feel good, maybe even take away that dread feeling of being lost so I continue on, lost completely.

Satan's breadcrumbs CAN NOT satisfy. They entice and even taste good, but they never satisfy. How careful I need to be to not even taste the first crumb that's just a little bit off the path I'm on. I pray that I can recognize those enticing first crumbs of Satan and stay away, stay focused on the gospel, on my goals, on the path, on what I REALLY want. Do I want breadcrumbs? Or do I want to sit down at the Savior's table and feast with him, being a joint heir with Him of all that the Father has? That's what I REALLY want.

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" Is it possible to reclaim a life that through reckless abandon has become so strewn with garbage that it appears that the person is unforgivable? Or what about the one who is making an honest effort but has fallen back into sin so many times that he feels that there is no possible way to break the seemingly endless pattern? Or what about the person who has changed his life but just can't forgive himself?The Atonement of Jesus Christ is available to each of us. His Atonement is infinite. It applies to everyone, even you. It can clean, reclaim, and sanctify even you. That is what infinite means—total, complete, all, forever. "

— Shayne M. Bowen

General Conference October 2006