In aviation, all mishaps, crashes, and fatalities are the result of a chain reaction of decisions. Each link in the chain contributes to the overall accident, and yet, breaking a single link is all that would have been required to avert disaster. The same is true in our spiritual lives. Sin doesn't just happen. Rather, it's the culmination of bad decision making and missed opportunities to choose a different outcome.
While sin is usually preceded by many decisions, it's increasingly important that we not submit in defeat. Sin can be beat, it can be stopped, and we can sum up the courage to choose a better life for ourselves.
Our conscience is a very powerful tool in our daily decision making. Although over time it can be perverted, it nevertheless keeps fighting, albeit in a more muted manner. In action, our conscience throws up multiple flags, warning us of impending danger. Each flag, each nag, each feeling of unease, is an opportunity for us to choose something different. Sin is always appealing until you act on it. Once on the other side, it has no further reason to masquerade as something fun or exciting. Instead, it's laid bare (pun intended) and we see the destruction, unhappiness, and pain that it brings.
In the fight, temptation and sin remain appealing. That reason alone should be all the motivation that we need in order to keep us in control. You control you. By ceding that control to anyone, or anything else, you give up the greatest bargaining chip that you have. When you're in control of your thoughts, desires, and actions, you're fortified against the empty attacks of temptation. When you cede control of your thoughts or your actions, or your emotions, you become increasingly susceptible to sin.
We all face varying degrees of temptation, and sometimes we're stronger than at other times. Fix problems as they come. You'll always have a principal sin, that big sin that you struggle with. Yet, over time, as you root out one principal sin, it's replaced by a weaker, less destructive one. You work to minimize both the strength and danger of your principal sin.
Despair is a tool of the Devil, and it's used to get us to give in where we otherwise may not. The fight is difficult, and the struggle is real, but each one of us has within ourselves the capacity and ability to stop sin in its tracks. Choose something different. Choose something better. Choose freedom.