HABITS: GODLY HABITS VS SINFUL HABITS

Are you struggling with any sinful habit and you are fed up? Have you promised yourself severally not to go back to your vomit only to find yourself there over and again? Have you said “I am tired”? I guess you must have also apologised and repented a thousand and one times!

This is one thing about habits that we must know – habits are addictive! They are easier to develop than to get rid of.
There are two entities always after your soul – God and the devil. While Satan is after your soul to destroy you (1 Peter 5:8), God wants you to have life, and life in it’s fullness (John 10:10).

When you find yourself entangled with any of these habits – masturbation, alcoholism, gambling, pornography, gossiping, slander, envy, jealousy, anger, fornication, lying etc. What should you do?
Firstly, whatever it may be, do not think that you are helpless!
Well, you may feel so, but don’t remain there confessing that you can’t be helped. You can be helped!

Isaiah 40:29-31 declares:
“He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint”.

The Lord doesn’t hate you for your sins, He wants you to rise up from where you have fallen and receive His strength to overcome your weakness and never go back to it. The fact that you even realize that you have sinned and you are sorry is the beginning of your deliverance. The Lord is your helper (Psalm 121:1-2) and He is willing to help you! You just have to acknowledge that you have sinned and turn to God, He will deliver you.

Be like King David who cried out in Psalm 51:10
“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me”.
Don’t remain in your mess and listen to the devil lying to you that you cannot be cleansed. Run to Jesus for a cleansing touch!

Secondly, confess your sins one to another. This is because sin thrives in secrecy. Have someone you are accountable to, brethren you can confess your shortcomings to, those who can handle such and help you out of it. Don’t fall and then hide, come out of your hiding, confess your sins and be prayed for! We were admonished in James 5:16 to confess our trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that we may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

When you have confessed your sins, genuinely repent and forsake them! Proverbs 28:13 says “He who covers his sins will not prosper,
But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy”. However, do not remain cast down because of the guilt of sin on your conscience. Romans 8:1 makes us to understand that “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit”. Yes, you once walked according to the dictates of your flesh, but now, you have repented and you are following the dictates of the spirit! So, there’s no need to wallow in self pity! Rather, build your spirit!

Thirdly, discover and develop godly habits, that’s the best way to counter and over come sinful habits. The best antidote to sinful habits is going back to the basic rudiments of prayer and the word of God!
Pray with all your heart!
The reason you fell in the first place was because your strength was small (Proverbs 24:10), develop the habit of praying and enjoy praying! Pray in the Holy ghost. The more you do this, the more the voice of the flesh will be weakened in you and the voice of the spirit will be stronger! Go back to the word, and feed on it even better than before. Draw strength from studying the word of God. Chew on scriptures, memorise them, sing with them, note them down and around your space. Create a constant reminder (about God’s word) every where around you! Just like David, hide the word of God in your heart so that you will not sin against God (Psalm 119:11). With the word richly in you, you will be strong enough to resist the devil when he comes with evil thoughts or temptations!

Godly habits when developed makes a person better, stronger, and more responsive to the Holy spirit. Godly habits are things you do or activities you engage in that will draw you closer to God and make His presence to be more cherished by you and evident in your life. Such habits when engaged in, will make you a true witness of our Lord Jesus Christ, you will shine as a light and indeed be the salt of the earth (simply, others will see Christ through you). Searching the scriptures regularly, not because you want to preach but because you desire the Lord is a godly habit!

Don’t forget – habits are addictive! Imagine being addicted to speaking in tongues and worshipping the Lord everywhere and every time? Ephesians 5:18 (NKJV) says “And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit”. You can be so filled with the spirit that you are completely under the Spirit’s influence and control.

Develop the habit of His presence. Practice how to be in His presence always. It starts with a genuine desire, for those who desire to have the Lord tangibly, He will give Himself to them. Mathew 5:6 says “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled”.

Worship more! Worship creates a spiritual atmosphere around you where sin cannot thrive! Don’t just meditate worship, sing out, worship God with songs, with tongues, with your voice. Sing out and fill your environment with the presence of God.

Lastly, flee all evil appearances! The spirit of God within you is to guide you into all truth. Be sensitive to the leadings of the spirit. As you do this, your level of discerning spirits will increase and you will be able to easily differentiate between good and evil! These two options will always be placed before you, but God wants you to choose life! Flee and refuse all evil as soon as they appear! Temptations will not just appear and then force themselves on you, it will always come as a proposal and it’s left to you to either accept it or flee.
Just as the Bible has admonished us, flee!!!

There are other habits that seem harmless but are equally dangerous. You need to cry out for help when you notice any of these:

– When you commit a sin and you no longer feel guilty
– When you despise the gathering of the brethren you once cherished.
– When praying and fasting has become a burden.
– When you are perpetually tired and so busy that you no longer study God’s word.
– When you seldom or no longer hear God through the means through which He used to speak to you.
– When you easily and constantly disregard and disobey the constituted authority placed over you.
– When you have lost the joy of the holy ghost- the desire to get into His presence.

There are some other habits too that may not be obviously showing signs, these attitudes may limit the flow of the spirit and hinder your walk with God. You need to constantly cry out to God to expose anything in you that is not of Him!

May God help your feet to remain firmly in Him! May nothing separate you from the love of God, neither temptations nor trials!
May His strength be indeed made perfect in your weakness in Jesus name! Amen!