Editorial: The Power of Habits

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The Power of Habits

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It has been said that we are all creatures of habit. In the absence of pressure to change, we tend to do things the same way over and over again. We live, think and act in predictable patterns. In short, our habits identify and define us.

So what are your habits? What actions make you you? Are you happy with your habits? More importantly, what does God think of your habits? These are important questions for vertical thinkers—people who think on godly things from above.

As we all know, habits can be either good or bad. Such habits as exercise or saying "Excuse me" when we accidentally bump into someone are good for our health and for getting along with others. Bad habits such as using God's name in vain or being disrespectful of other people give us a bad reputation with God and our fellow man.

Have you ever stopped to think about Jesus' habits? The things He did were always predictably in line with God's instructions. He never sinned—not once. One of Jesus' good habits was attending church every Sabbath. Luke 4:16 says: "So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read" (emphasis added). People could count on Jesus assembling with others to worship God on the Sabbath. It was what Jesus did over and over again.

Of course, Jesus had many other good habits including working hard, showing respect to God, prayer and showing mercy to others through His preaching and healing.

In this issue we focus on habits and the way we human beings think. While these subjects are valuable ones to study at any time of the year, they are especially important for Christians to consider during the upcoming Days of Unleavened Bread, April 24-30. Christians who follow the example of Jesus, the apostles and the Christians of the first century will be observing this festival with personal examination to see whether we really are pleasing God (2 Corinthians 13:5; 1 Corinthians 5:6-8).

The Days of Unleavened Bread teach us that our minds often trick us into thinking we are right with God when we really aren't. Jeremiah teaches us that our minds are "deceitful" (Jeremiah 17:9), while Paul adds that we have to bring our thoughts into line with Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). Learning to control our thoughts is the starting place for controlling our actions. And with God's help, we can overcome wrong thinking and bad habits. Here's to all of us replacing our bad habits with good ones! VT

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