Here is the devotional:
We must learn to appreciate the potential that is inherent in our habitual nature. We must learn to fear that potential as well, because the tree that leans as it grows will find it increasingly difficult to change its slant as the years pass by. The farther that tree leans, the more susceptible it will become to the wind and the rain. It is a fact that it is easier to help a tree grow straight than it is to straighten a crooked tree once it has grown, and it is easier to develop a new habit than it is to break an old one that is deeply rooted in one’s life.
Since your habits will make or break you, the choice is up to you. They will give you an edge in life by equipping you to do great things with limited effort, or they will inhibit your life by weighing you down with burdens you weren’t designed to carry and sorrows you weren’t created to bear. If you want your habits to serve you instead of control you, you must develop some healthy habits in your life, habits that can produce good things for you now and great things for you in the future. You must learn to break the power of those unwanted habits that limit your life and bring you pain. In the pages that follow, I will show you how to do both.
Perhaps, most importantly, you must learn to differentiate between a good habit and a bad one. Habits are a lot like seeds. They may not produce their harvest overnight, but in due season they will definitely yield the crop they are preprogrammed to yield. A good habit will eventually produce a good harvest in your life, but a bad habit will produce a harvest of failure and death.
So, learn to appreciate the power of a habit before you back the truck up to the driveway and pour the cement, because once the concrete dries and the wooden forms are removed, you can be stuck with what you’ve got for a long, long time. And what you’ve got is a habit.
Here are the scriptures referenced:
Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
Hebrews 10:25 KJV
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6 KJV
In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity,
Titus 2:7 KJV
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Philippians 4:8 KJV
Here are Stu’s thoughts:
Oh boy! Habits….
Like the author said habits can be good or they can be bad. And some of us need to be able to differentiate between the two.
That may sound easy but for some it’s the hardest thing ever. Especially for someone fighting for sobriety.
See when I was quitting porn I worked in the mall where there was a Victoria Secret store. I had to mindfully change where I parked when coming to work so I would have to enter through a different door. Some may call that a routine but in all essence it’s a habit.
When one comes out of rehab they can’t go back to the same crowd they habitually hung out with. They must make new friends.
My step-dad still reached in his shirt pocket for his pack of cigarettes when he became stressed even years after he quit.
A habit/routine is something that has been done so much that is almost second nature.
That’s why for some it is so hard to know a bad one from a good one. They’re just natural to them.
Like staying up after your wife has gone to bed. There’s nothing wrong with that at all as long as you are not a recovering porn addict. If you are that has now become a bad habit. Get your butt in bed when your wife goes to bed. And stay there!
Maybe you chew your nails when stressed out. That is a bad habit and you need a new means of coping with stress. Try praying about it instead.
Prayer is an awesome habit to get into!
So is reading the Bible!
Take a moment and write down your habits. Try to pinpoint the bad ones. Then formulate a plan to set new good habits in place of the old bad ones.
It takes time and it takes effort.
Like they say it is easier to train a child than to fix a broken adult.
But you can teach an old dog new tricks. So it possible to set new habits!
2 thoughts on “Make That, Break That: Day 1”
Thank you Stu. Your use of the analogy of a crooked versus straight tree works well. We can learn a thing or two from God’s creation.
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That we could Richard, that we could!