What has God been telling you to do that you have been putting off? It’s okay to admit it; we’ve all been guilty of ignoring God many times in our lives. Even the apostle Paul said that he didn’t do the things he wanted to do, but rather kept doing those things he didn’t want to do (Romans 7:15). Each of us know the things we should be doing to glorify Christ, but more often than not we keep to our old habits and more “comfortable” ways. Who are we to believe that what we are doing is more satisfying than obedience to God? It’s ludicrous and very dangerous to flaunt our freewill in the face of the One who granted it. Yet time and again we play with fire and ignore the commands of Christ in order to continue our greedy and selfish pursuits.
If you have old habits that cause you to live contrary to the teachings of Jesus, you must ask yourself who is truly Lord of your life. Remember when you gave your heart to Christ and promised that from that day forward that He would be first in your life? Did you actually mean that? And more importantly do you still believe it now? If we are to be true followers of Jesus, the old habits have to be discarded and we must develop new ones that will reflect the love of God through our lives. If Jesus has been convicting you of things in your life that you know are not consistent with being a servant of Christ, the time to get rid of them is now. If hanging out with certain people or in a certain place is triggering the undesired behavior, get some new friends and find some new places. If certain activities cause you to start heading down the wrong road, start preaching to yourself when you are tempted; say something like “I have committed my entire heart to Jesus Christ and I will not dishonor Him by indulging in my own selfish desires.”
Perhaps your habits aren’t the problem, but rather you are running away from God’s calling on your life. If you feel compelled to move to another country or to take a new job that would result in a lower standard of living, it’s understandable you might feel some trepidation. However, if you linger in your uncertainty, you may not only be jeopardizing a blessing from God, but may be also putting yourself directly in opposition to His will. Remember Jonah? He tried to run from God and ended up being thrown overboard, doing time in the putrid belly of a whale, and was ultimately regurgitated on the beach along with everything else the fish had recently eaten. I don’t believe this was the quaint flannel graph story we learned in Sunday school. Rather, I think this was one of the most frightening and vile things one could ever experience. Jonah was a prophet of God, but his disobedience led to horrific events in his life. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I want to put myself in the shoes of Jonah.
If we want to live lives wholly devoted to God, we must live in accordance with His commands. Everything in our lives, from the smallest issues to the largest decisions, must reflect the love of our Savior and King. When He compels us to go, we must not hesitate. No matter how frightening your decision, the way of obedience is far less terrifying than that of disobedience. Don’t waiver and don’t worry; God is faithful to see you through. Put aside the things that are getting in between you and God. You are either with Him or against Him (Luke 11:23). Don’t make the foolish mistake of refusing to live in the manner to which you were called. You will never find peace running away from what He has told you to do, and the old habits will never satisfy as long as you are a slave to them. Surrender to Jesus, do what He is telling you to do, and find freedom for life.