Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a prepaid hotel at thousands of locations around the world? I mean, seriously, who wouldn’t want that? And the deal sounds so good. On the surface. Get a free trip to Las Vegas just for listening to our sales pitch. Seems so simple. I have no problem telling someone no. But, the sales pitch was so good.
We ended up going through the first pitch and meeting with an agent one on one. This was early in our marriage, we weren’t nearly as wise as we are now. 🙂 We were also some of the last people to stick around. It was sounding so good, and even affordable. Until we did the math and thought through everything. It was one of those deals that you’re excited about when you’re envisioning yourself on the beach with a mai thai on the arm of your recliner. But, then when you don’t get to go out to eat because you have to make your monthly payment, it doesn’t feel quite as magical.
I’m sure many of us feel this regret. If you’ve ever signed a contract to get a better deal on cable or because you just had to have the new iphone, you know what I’m talking about. Luckily for us, we kept from signing thousands of dollars away that day. By the way, if you want to get the best deal possible, keep resisting the salesman. They will keep sending someone back out with better offers.
We avoided the pain that day, but there have been other deals that we have found ourselves chained to that have cost us. It’s a mistake that seems unavoidable at the time. How am I supposed to get good credit if I never use a credit card? How am I supposed to watch TV if I don’t have cable? How am I supposed to check in places if I don’t have an iphone? But, in the end, none of these things live up to the hype that was promised. Life isn’t really better because of them. It’s pretty much the same, except for the fact that we’re out a few more bucks.
What does any of that have to do with today’s proverb? Isn’t this proverb just talking about the adulterous woman and avoiding her? No, not only that. Yes, It does pertain to that specifically, but the plea is to avoid all kinds of seduction. All forms of seduction will lead you down a path you shouldn’t go. The repercussions of some are far more reaching than others, but they all take life out of us. The adulterous woman in this passage is merely the personification of the warning against seduction.
My child, be attentive to my wisdom,
pay close attention to my understanding,
in order to safeguard discretion,
and that your lips may guard knowledge.
For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey,
and her seductive words are smoother than olive oil,
but in the end she is bitter as wormwood,
sharp as a two-edged sword.
Her feet go down to death;
her steps lead straight to the grave.
Lest she should make level the path leading to life,
her paths are unstable but she does not know it.
Whatever is successful at seducing you defines you, but only for as long as you allow it to control you. [tweetherder]As soon as you take a step toward the proverbious life, you take a step toward freedom.[/tweetherder] As soon as you take a step toward living the proverbious life you take a step toward releasing yourself from the slavery of seduction.
If you need help finding the path to freedom let me offer one suggestion, go back to where you started down this road and turn the other direction. Take a few minutes and travel back into the recesses of your mind and find the time you first decided to make this decision. Remember the war that raged within you at the time. Remember the voice screaming at you in the coffers of your conscience to stop. Remember the guilt you felt after you had relinquished control of yourself. Remember all those awful things that have happened as a result. Allow those feelings to be stirred up in you once more. Not to overwhelm you with guilt, but to empower you with motivation to do the right thing. And when you have succeeded at denying the seductress, you have gained power over her.
And when those feelings creep back and you feel yourself slipping, do the same thing again. Every time you do, you are strengthening your resistance muscles and allowing the seduction muscles to atrophy. Every time it will get easier. Maybe not by leaps and bounds, but easier nonetheless.