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Recognizing Destructive Habits

By, Hannah Barnes

“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing,

but the flesh is weak.”

Matthew 26:41

I love this passage of scripture. The verses surrounding it reveal Jesus agonizing in the garden, just before the Crucifixion. His disciples…the men He ministered with side-by-side on earth… Healing lepers, giving sight to the blind, dead to rise, lame to walk.. These men- who had watched with their very eyes as Jesus did the miraculous…they fell asleep.

Jesus reproves them in the previous verse saying, “What, could you not watch with me one hour?” In this passage, the word “watch” literally means to give strict attention to, to be cautious. When you study it out, you’ll find that it means to “take heed lest through laziness some destructive calamity shall suddenly overtake one.”

So I ask myself… What destructive habits am I allowing in my life right now? What area does God want me to “take heed” to?

1. Self-Comparison. I am not called to run anyone else’s race but my own. God built me the way He did on purpose, and I need to embrace who He has created ME to be. I am heavier than I should be right now, and if I’m not careful, I’ll find myself thinking that I am less valuable because of my current weight. My worth is found in my position in Christ. NOT in a number on a scale.

2. Excessive Scrolling. Unless I’m posting something that’s going to edify and/or encourage, I need to seriously limit the time spent on social media. How often do I pick up my phone to look up a recipe or send a text message, and before I know it, I’ve lost 10 minutes scrolling various social media platforms? It’s an amazing tool, but it’s also a HUGE distractor.

3. Self-Focus. When we are in a place of constant adversity, it’s easy to become focused solely on ourselves and lose sight of the needs of our friends, family, church members and community. I’ve recently walked through a 2-year ordeal of church hurt and as I am slowly making my way to the other side, I am realizing how self-focused I had become. In nearly every area of my life, I am seeing the negative effects. My home. My physical health. My spiritual life.

Just as Jesus knew the disciples would fall asleep, He knew our weakness long before He was crucified. He loves us despite our weaknesses. However, He does not want us to remain in a state of yielding to those destructive habits.

Where are you “spiritually” asleep today? Wake-up to those areas of your life and give control over to the Lord.

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