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.
1 Corinthians 10:13
I have a tradition with a group of my friends. Whenever we are all back in Canberra, we set out to complete an escape room.
For those unfamiliar, escape rooms are games where the aim is to, well, escape the room. Players find themselves ‘trapped’ in a room with a series of codes, puzzles, and locks. Using hidden clues and questions, players solve their way through the puzzles until they attain freedom. It’s a fun activity that tests patience, teamwork, and problem-solving skills.
Our most recent victory took place last week, and my mind couldn’t help but draw from this experience as Pastor Joe covered the topic of escape in last week’s service (You can listen to that message on our homepage). Specifically, Pastor Joe discussed escaping temptation and trials. As I listened to his message, I saw many parallels between escaping these trials, and the completion of escape rooms.
The first similarity between trials and escape rooms is that both give you a very simple choice – do you persevere, or do you simply give up? In an escape room, you may be ‘trapped’, but you’re never really trapped. Should the game prove too difficult and you decide to concede to the room’s challenges, you can always walk out the door you initially entered. It’s very similar to giving up during a trial or giving in to worldly temptations. However, the stronger willed continue and persevere. The path ahead is more difficult, but more rewarding.
In fact, choosing to persevere is not only difficult – it’s near impossible on your own. Escape rooms are riddled (pun intended) with locks and codes that no one could decipher without the accompanying clues. Just as one cannot solve these puzzles without a key or clue, we cannot escape our trials without God’s help. As it says in 1 Cor 10:13, “…but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” God will not allow us to be in these moments without a way out.
Sometimes, it’s not just one room you need to escape from. Finally unlocking that door may very well lead to more puzzles that need solving. Likewise, persevering past one trial may not be where your tribulation ends. However, when you do finally escape, there is a sense of accomplishment and gain in your victory. With each completion of an escape room, you improve your skills and strategies, succeeding faster and more often. Likewise, escaping your temptations becomes easier each time, too. When you make it through your real-life trials, you eventually understand why God allowed you to endure it – whether it be to grow your character or achieve works that will exalt Him.
So, the next time you may feel tempted or you’re going through some sort of trial, think of it as an escape room God has challenged you with. Though you may not understand why right now, He has allowed you to be in this situation for a purpose, but He hasn’t left you there by yourself. God is with you, showing you the way to prevail and come out a better person. When you put your trust in the Lord, there is no hardship that you cannot escape.
Nathan Ricabo is a student from Canberra.