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Bad habits - victory over all? (05/20/2007)
From: David Foss

Galesville, Wis.

Isn't it exciting and encouraging to triumph in getting victory over some nasty habit? No longer surrendering to some disgusting habit always fills us with a good feeling. Gaining victory over a bad habit puts us into a state of tranquility. We no longer have that defeatist feeling of kowtowing to something that we know isn't good for us.

How many of us have said, "I've triumphed over most of my bad habits, but there is one habit that remains a thorn in my flesh! It has such a grip on me! I have given up getting victory over this habit." The main reason we are unable to defeat a bad habit is because we derive some pleasure from it and we refuse to give this up.

Has anyone ever gotten upset and regretted having given up a bad habit? Can we imagine someone saying, with torrents of tears cascading down his or her cheeks, "I wish I hadn't gotten victory over drinking because I miss the hangovers. I wish I hadn't conquered smoking because I feel so much better now. I wish I hadn't overcome the urge to gamble because I have more money now. I wish I hadn't quit goofing off at school because I am getting better grades now." No, joy always comes upon us after we have prevailed over one of our enemies - the bad habit.

Are people ever going to think less of us because we have gotten victory over a bad habit? They shouldn't. They should be rejoicing with us. Can we call someone a friend who wants us to yield to those things that ruin our good health and our relationship with our family?

As an incentive, we could replace each bad habit with something good. For instance, the money we save by not indulging in a bad habit could be spent on an outing with our family. The additional money could be spent on clothing, charity or any number of good things.

Do we have any excuse for not getting victory over a bad habit? Will "Hail to the Chief" harm our president? We only need to ask for God's help and be sincere in wanting to quit our bad habit(s). With God's help we can and will have victory over any bad habit that we have accepted and retained from Satan. I Corinthians 15:57

For starters let's do this: (1) Make a list of our bad habits (2) Pray, believe and trust that God will grant us victory (3) Ask family and friends to pray also (4) Give ourselves a reward (an incentive) for each victory (5) Be patient (6) Reflect on ourselves becoming happier and healthier (7) Reflect on ourselves having a new, positive outlook on live (8) Think of some good we will be able to do with our extra cash, etc.

Many times we use the excuse, "Well, we've tried to quit so many times so we just gave up trying." Yes, the odds of victory are greatly against us (we are likely doomed to fail) if we rely on our own strength when battling with Satan's temptation. There is only one person who can guarantee us doubtless victory over any habit with one hundred percent certainty. This person is Jesus Christ. Together with His partnership, and if we truly believe, than we can and will be assured of a conclusive victory. Matthew 21:22

All of us have at least one bad habit, but with God's help we can have and will have victory over all. Praise the Lord!

Ponder Philippians 4:13



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