Again and again I sent all my servants the prophets to you. They said, “Each of you must turn from your wicked ways and reform your actions; do not follow other gods to serve them. (Jeremiah 35:15 NIV)
The Miriam-Webster dictionary defines a habit as a behavior pattern acquired by frequent repetition or physiologic exposure that shows itself in regularity or increased facility of performance; an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly or completely involuntary; a manner of conducting oneself.
If we examine our lives, how many habits do we have? If you really think about it, it can become mind boggling. I guess, depending on how old you are, you have a lifetime of acquired habits that have been formed by conditioning. The condition of your childhood, the condition of your health, the condition of your socio-economic surroundings, the condition of your level of education, etc.. The things and people that are around us impact us. The repetitive things are the things that eventually become habits with us.
Anything can become repetitive by the degree of value that we place on it. As a young individual with a young mind you may place importance on what other people are doing, how they will view you and so you may do things according to that influence, for example smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol or sampling drugs. You start out voluntarily making a decision, but after a while you are stuck in habit that you are involuntarily chained to. These types of habits impact our lives and futures in a negative way. What took little effort to form a habit takes a huge amount of effort, dedication, mental and physical distress to change or break away from.
It only takes one impulsive act to change your life. This change can be positive or negative depending on the side effects of the decision. The enemy sows his seeds by feeding thoughts in our minds that are attached to emotive tensions in our lives.
Our inclination may be to question the thought and he know that so he begins to feed us more lies and lure us into seeing only glimpses of truth. Yes, he may feed you a thought that you may become part of the “in crowd” but that does not mean that what you do will be good for your body, health, or that you will be able to control the effects of the impulse and the decision. He knows that if he can get you to act on impulse, he can get you to act again and again and he will continue to feed you lies based on your emotions and before long, you are caught up in all sorts of habits that he can use to lead you onto a path of destruction. You see, that is his goal, to destroy you and to use you to destroy others.
My friend, if you are not following Jesus, the Son of God, who was sent to us to defeat satan and provide a future for us beyond sin, destruction and death, then you are following satan. There is no middle ground.
When Jesus gave up His life on the cross, He gave it up voluntarily so that we might have a new life, hope, help, and a way to fight the enemy. When he ascended into heaven he sent us a helper. “But the helper, the Holy Spirit that my father sends to you in my name, will teach you all things and bring to remember all that I have taught you” (John 14:26 NIV) If we believe in Jesus then we can walk in the Spirit and by the Spirit. “I have heard that the spirit of the gods is in you and that you have insight, intelligence and outstanding wisdom” (Daniel 5:14 NIV). God did not send His son to the world to condemn it, but to save it (John 3:16-17 NIV) and He did not leave us in a condition worse than before he came. The Holy Spirit lives within us and if we tap into Him then He can provide us with the intelligence and wisdom that we need to make all our decisions. Our impulse should not be to act on our emotions, our impulse should be to ask the Holy Spirit for guidance in our decisions. Repetition of this act will form a habit!
Once we engage the Holy Spirit to act on our behalf, Satan is immediately defeated. We will not be led into a situation that will harm us. The important thing is this, if we ask for the help of the Holy Spirit, then we must listen, trust and obey.
We are not alone in this world. Satan may try to make us believe that we are lonely and that we need certain things in our lives, but we have a helper that can help us see the truth and avoid the harm that satan’s deceptions cause us.
We cannot say that we believe in Jesus and live a life that does not include Him. Belief from our mind is not the same thing as believing with our hearts. Relationships are built from the heart not the head. If you do not have Jesus in your heart, then you do not know Him and he cannot save you. Satan uses our emotions to lead us because we engage in life through our emotions. It is the same with Jesus. Once you surrender your heart to Him, He can begin to build a relationship with you and the Holy Spirit can live in you. The spirit of God cannot live together with the Spirit of Satan. God cannot look upon sin, that is why He sent His Son, so that He could take all the sin upon Himself and destroy it. When you are in relationship with Jesus, then God sees you through His Son and He sees who He created you to be.
Most of the habits we have in our lives are tied to emotions and emotions are tied to our hearts. If we get our hearts right with God, then we can begin to form new and different habits with the help of the Holy Spirit and our lives can turn around for the better.
Do you have satan led habits? What do you need to change?