1 John 2:17, NIV: The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.

The influence of this world is very powerful. It can hold us in its grip. It can enslave us and keep us captive to its will. It can convince us of its own importance, making itself out to be more real to us than God. Wisdom cries out to us, desiring to guide us to the Truth. The truth is that the things of God are real and lasting, and the things of this world are passing. And yet we are consumed by this world, the cares of this life, the pursuit of personal happiness, and more. Day after day we invest time and energy into making a life in this world. And the longer we continue doing so, the more we become like those in the world around us. We think as they do. We live as they do. We seek the same material things, the same successes, and the same pleasures. Our thinking, that is to be transformed to the likeness of Christ’s, clings instead to the patterns of worldly thought. We believe in faith and miracles as long as they are subject to common sense and practicality. The influence of this world is very powerful. It can hold us in its grip. How much hold does it have on you?