Old Habits Die Hard

Galatians 6:8 (ESV)
“For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.”

My goodness, how we are creatures of habit. Habits in themselves aren’t bad, but the habits that often keep us from pursuing a life in accordance with God’s will certainly are.

As believers, throughout our earthly existence there is an ongoing battle with desires of the flesh and desires of the Spirit dwelling within us. We have been introduced to our Savior and have learned for the most part what He requires of us, yet we continue in daily struggle to give up the habits that prevent us from complete communion with our Lord.

Much of our existence is on strengthening the flesh, whether through diet and exercise, or medical visits to keep our bodies in fine tune. We pay attention to our bodies and the cravings that envelop us from time to time, whether it is through the need for rest, food, sex, or any other urge that grabs our attention. All the while, our Spirit is likely starving.

So how do we reverse this?

For many of us, we have allowed—through our own free will and choices—to let the indwelling Holy Spirit become quenched by our desires for the things of the world. We attend church sporadically if at all and see little need for personal Bible study in our own homes. We are drawn to the things that nurture our physical bodies instead of those things that would prepare us for the spiritual reunion with our Creator.

We alone decide which side we will feed and which one we will sacrifice. I recognize this in myself that just by missing a Sunday fellowship opportunity in the church I regularly attend, I feel disconnected from God more than when I am in regular attendance. We NEED that mutual encouragement from one another to help sustain our Spirit during our daily walk with God. There are several verses of Scripture that emphasize the value in encouraging one another, and it is one we should not ever take for granted (c.f. 1 Thessalonians 5:11; Hebrews 10:23-25; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; Galatians 6:2; Proverbs 27:17; Romans 1:11-12; 2 Corinthians 1:3-4). If you feel your spirituality weakened, I encourage you to find a church to begin serving in faithfully.

So, the questions remains ours alone to answer: Which will you feed the most? Carnal man or spiritual man? Carnal man will continue to grow stronger when we feed it with sensuous living, while spiritual man will go stronger when it is nourished with the things of God (Romans 13:14). There is no ambiguity in the Bible concerning which you should choose.

Make today the first day of a new habit; a habit that draws you closer to God.