“All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” (Matt. 4:9)

Each year, millions of TV viewers watch eagerly as the entertainment industry selects a new “idol”—someone considered talented enough to merit the public adulation and monetary rewards that follow. Thousands of hopeful contestants apply in the hopes of becoming that special one.

Satan came to Jesus in the desert and tempted Him to becoming a miracle-performing superstar, with the worldly rewards this would offer. After two rebuffs, Satan made his big pitch: Jesus could have the world’s kingdoms and all their splendor if He would only bow down and worship Satan. The Devil coveted worship—the one thing that belongs to God alone. If Satan tempted Jesus along these lines, we can be sure he will test the followers of Jesus, as well.

God has given gifts and talents to all His children but our human nature is inclined to set up high pedestals for those whose gifts appear more “special.” It’s good and proper to value and be grateful for each other’s talents, and to commend what is lovely and excellent, but worship and adoration must be reserved exclusively for God, the Creator of all.

Jesus countered Satan’s temptations with the written Word, and we can do the same. We will be safe if we remember God’s gifts and talents are not meant for competition or pedestals, but to build up the church and glorify the Father.

Whatever your gift or talent, use it today—for God’s glory.

Carol Chase and her husband live in Surrey, British Columbia. She is a retired administrative supervisor, enjoys gardening, and loves to pray for others.