Jul 16, 2018

Force of Habit

This morning as I walked down the hall toward my bedroom, I noticed my office door was closed.

Not sure why I closed it, must be force of habit.

The pondering started...

Interesting term, "force of habit", wonder why we say that?

Yes, habits can be forceful, kind of compel you to do something without even thinking.


In this case, the habit came from our cats. Their food was in the office so we had to keep the door closed to keep the dog out. This morning I was on autopilot, still waking up, and I must have closed the door when I walked out.

After more pondering, my curious mind led me to Google. According to Merriam Webster's online dictionary, "force of habit" means “behavior made involuntary or automatic by repeated practice.”

Involuntary. Automatic. From repeated practice.

I thought about some habits I've slid into lately...
  • Watching TV.
  • Playing games on my phone.
  • Too much online and social media browsing.

And what is not getting done?

  • Time with the Lord
  • Keeping up with finances and paperwork
  • Healthy food preparation
  • Writing, writing, writing

How did this happen? And why is it so much easier to slide into unproductive habits than it is to develop fruitful habits?

For me, it’s mostly a lack of focus and intention with my time, followed by tiredness at the end of the day. It takes no energy to sit and watch TV, or browse the internet. “I’ll do that later / tomorrow” has been my mantra. Instead of being restful, though, I’ve found my energy is lower, my to-do-list is growing longer, and on top of that I’ve started having busy and disturbing dreams.

I’ve lost my peace! Lord, please forgive me for so much wasted time!

And thank you, Lord, for showing me where I am. One day, one choice at a time, I’m going to start exchanging these lazy habits for more time with You.

And hopefully the force of habit each morning will lead me right into my prayer closet. That’s my prayer, Lord, please help me to choose wisely!

4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.  (Philippians 4:4-9, NIV)

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