THE REAL THING

Why Your Routines and Good Habits Can Have Harmful Effects

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What if good habits, strategies, or goals are keeping you from living your best life?

Lets back up. Congratulations! You’re moving forward and making good choices and improvements in your life. The world needs more people like you. You aren’t happy with the status quo. You’re convinced life has more for you. Great choice!

So lets talk about your thing. You know, the thing you’re always talking about these days.. The thing you think about most of your waking moments. It may be the work out routine you’re always posting about, or your diet, or the new kitchen project. You know what I’m talking about. This thing you’ve been working on.

Sooner or later, you’re going to find yourself saying “I’d love to, but I HAVE to…do my thing. Here is where you fill in the blank. Maybe it’s your morning devotions, or prayer, or your workout routine, or your project. Whatever it may be, the minute you find yourself saying that, there should be red flags popping up everywhere. Something is missing.

At this point, you may be thinking ‘What’s the big deal?”. The things I’m doing are good. These are healthy choices. I’m improving. Everything’s looking up.

Plain and simple, life is about more than your thing. If you’re not careful, your thing can become a substitute for the thing you really wanted when you first started out.

If it was a health routine, you were looking to feel better. Chances are if you’ve stuck with that routine for any amount of time, it’s working. Great. However, if your routine has become something you HAVE to do, then there’s a problem. It won’t be long and you’ll no longer WANT to do what you HAVE to do. What was once an opportunity has become a necessity.

It’s amazing how subtle this can all be. Too much of a good thing can become a bad thing if it’s something you have to do.

So lets look at how that might apply to a marriage. Years ago you were thrilled to have the opportunity to spend the rest of your life with your significant other. For about the first six months you were in Hormone Heaven! Then something happened. What was once a joy became an obligation. You had to be home at a certain time. You had to be faithful. You had to dump the garbage or else….Before long, you slipped from a freeing relationship to a legal contract. Your marriage should be a great source of joy in your life.

The good news is that when you notice something is missing in your new routine or habit, or relationship, it’s an opportunity to investigate and see what’s lacking. Again, routines and healthy habits can be wonderful things but when they become ‘The Thing’, there’s a problem. Which leads us up to what the Real Thing is….God. Except he’s not a thing, but a person. In fact, he may let your thing be a source of happiness and pleasure for quite sometime. But eventually, when the new car smell begins to fade you’ll be reminded of the true source of everything good in your life. James says: “So my good friends, don’t get thrown off course.  Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven.  The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light.” James 1:17 The Message.

Practically, here are a couple of thoughts on getting beyond your thing. First, take a deep breath. You’re not the first person this has happened to. Second, tell your Heavenly Father. Tell him specifically what’s happened. How you meant well, but feel like you’ve made a mess of things. Three, wait. Hard thing to do, right? But just because you’ve stopped doesn’t mean there won’t be fall-out for awhile. Fourth, learn. That’s what life is all about. When you stop learning, you start dying. Ask God what you can do to make the most of this moment. Ask him what he’s trying to teach you.

Finally, praise him! You’ve been set free to love and live in a whole new way. Use the lesson you’ve learned to be a constant reminder of your continual dependence on a Father who truly loves and cares for you.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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