Habits by Robin Densmore Fuson
Pain shot through my arm. For months, I’ve struggled using my limb. Somehow, I injured it. Months ago, the deltoid, tricep, and brachial muscles began to rebel. Simple things are tough. Sleeping on my left side is difficult. I shift and squirm until I’ve found the perfect position where it can rest and hopefully heal. Pulling my elbow out and away from my body brings sharp pain.
All my life, I’ve stuck my right into a sleeve and then slipped my left into the other side. Now to prevent pain, I need to start with my non-dominate side. Sometimes, I forget and have to pull my right arm out and begin again with my left. Frustrating and painful. Pullovers are practically unachievable by myself and I’ve had to ask my husband to help me. Fastening something against my back by myself is painful and almost impossible. Jimmy to the rescue!
I need to flip the habit my brain thinks is the correct sequence. Dressing this way, by starting with my dominant side, is not a bad thing—after all, I’ve done it for over a half-a-century. The injury showed me how I’d done something without thinking all my life. I’d grown accustomed to the way I get dressed. Habits are comfortable and, in-of-themselves, may not be wrong and in fact, they could be good. But are they the best?
It hit me. This is like my spiritual walk with the Lord. Have I sunk my teeth into my good habits of reading the Bible and praying, albeit good things, but neglected to ask the Lord if there are things I need to revise?
Being stubborn and not altering a habit or mindset causes me pain when I try to dress the same way. Purposing to take care of my left arm by sliding it into the sleeve first is changing my habit—renewing my mind.
Often there is something in our thoughts, actions, and lives that we should adjust, relearn, prioritize, reverse, or throw away. Renew our mind.
When we listen to His prodding and we begin the process, we will feel uncomfortable. Growth is painful. Change is tough. Renewing our minds takes focus, intent, and repetition.
God says we need to renew our minds to be focused on Him and His word and be willing to revise our thinking. Are we up for that challenge?
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Romans 12:2 NLT)
“Lord, please show me where I need to change. Where I need to strengthen, and where I need to rest. Help me to see my thoughts, actions, habits, standards, and emotions through Your eyes. In Jesus name, Amen.”