New Habits


Part 4 of 4 in our “The New Normal” Series.


Romans 7:15 NLT I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate…

Why do we choose what we don’t want day after day? We want to be thinner, but we choose to be fat. We want to be financially secure, but we choose to be broke. Garfield the cat once said, “It’s amazing the things people would rather have than money.” And, we want to be closer to God, to live in real power, unaffected by the world’s drama, but we choose distance instead.

It is time to get to know the person we don’t let others see because that is the person Jesus saved. That is the person being transformed.  We are no longer powerless to change.


WAKE UP!

Get Your Head in the Game Every Day through PRAYER. We tend to live on autopilot just going through the motions of life, just surviving until we die. When was the last time we were INSPIRED!  What was our last real adventure?

1 Corinthians 11:1 NLT And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.

How did Jesus live His Life? He looked for the Father at work and He joined Him. How did He do that? He stayed up late to talk to His Father and He got up really early to talk to His Father. He ended and began His Day with His Father.  

Consider how God created a day to work. We think of the day from morning to evening. But, in the beginning a day was referred to as evening and morning.  The lesson? The day starts in the evening. If you want a great day, start at bedtime. Our brains are designed to process the events of the day, and the last things we think on will go deepest.

We could end our day with our Heavenly Father. We could start our morning with Him, and then we could follow Him all day.

2 Timothy 2:21-22 NLT  If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.

Daily, we need to Clean Up! – CONFESSION. Come Clean with God through Confession. Sins really mess us up. Sins make us dirty – 1 John 1:19. Sins make us sick – James 5:16. Sins make us mute – Psalms 66:18. Sins make us deaf – James 1:21. Everyday, we need an honest look at ourselves. And we need God to get rid of our junk. Jesus gave us a visual on how this works when he washed the Disciples’ feet in John 13. We need Jesus to wash our feet everyday.

We need to Back Up! – PRAISE. We need to do a “back up” everyday!  We need to thank and praise God for what He has done! He has helped us. He has blessed us. We should tell people. And, we should write it down so we remember.

And we need to Sync Up! – WORSHIP. We should get our daily download from heaven and we do that when we worship. Whether it’s music, silence, nature, reflection or it may be some other way. Each day we should step INTO God’s amazing love for us!


STAND UP!

Ephesians 6:10-11 NLT A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.

Sign On! We need to Log In to the Day’s Battle. It’s our job to make the Devil pay! It’s our privilege to make sure his minions wish they had never gotten out of bed. So each day we must get into the battle. And, here’s the thing. It IS a battle. We keep getting blindsided because we ignore that reality. So Fight Today! Fight for your family, your friends, your future, and your eternity.  Your enemy would like to take them from you. (John 10:10) So, sign on! But don’t forget to…

Suit Up!  Every gamer knows, you have got to suit up. You need weapons, guns, cars, or skills.

Ephesians 6:13 NLT Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.

Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, God’s Word, and prayer are God’s Armor for the child of God who is ready to get into the fray.

And, by the way, your enemy has only one weapon. Lies. His reality is that He is totally beaten.

1 Corinthians 9:24, 26 NLT Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!… 26 So I run with purpose in every step. …

Game On! We could help our community relieve suffering. Maybe we could go on a mission trip or raise money for something important. We could relieve the misery of others by simply praying for the people we encounter in our daily routines.


EVERYDAY!

This is like an Online Game that can’t be paused, so don’t quit. Keep on pressing, praying, and growing.  We are to help the ones we can. Our enemy will try to trick us into inaction by pointing out those we can’t help.  But, our job is not to determine the results, but rather to simply be poured out for the one who was poured out for us.


Discussion:

  • Discuss Romans 7:15-25. How/why do we often choose the things in life we DON’T want?
  • Discuss 1 Peter 2:11. How do worldly desires “war” against us?
  • Discuss Psalms 37:4-5. How might a “delight in the Lord” change us and our desires?
  • Discuss our “morning/evening” approach to a day in contrast with Genesis 1?
  • Discuss Ephesians 6:10-18. Discuss Paul’s Christian Armor. Share your ideas with the group.
  • What are some “everyday” habits that have helped your faith?
  • Is there a “battle” you would like to undertake? How would it honor God?
  • Did anything stand out in your reading today that you could share with someone else?