Our lives are made up of time, and we only have so many waking hours in each day. How we spend that time will determine whether we live the full, happy and abundant life that God desires for us, or an unhappy and unfulfilled one.
One important tool for living a full, abundant life is the good habit. A few good habits in your life can be most helpful. But if you have an abundance of good habits in your life, you have a powerful tool! The difference between few and many such habits is like the difference between a handsaw and a power saw. Imagine how much more wood you can saw with a power saw over a handsaw. If your life is filled with a multitude of good habits, you will be like a power saw—a buzz saw!
What else happens when you fill your life with good habits? For one, you won’t get into trouble. If you are busy doing good things, you won’t have much time for wrong things. You’ll forgo the occasion to sin because you are too busy doing the right. It seems as though God uses that strategy with the ministry: He keeps us busy so that we have little time for folly. God expects the few to accomplish a lot, which means we need to make efficient use of our time.
Fill your life brimful and running over with good habits. Keep adding to your range of good habits, like a pianist who keeps adding more songs to his repertoire. Fill your life with good habits and that will limit the bad habits from getting a foothold. We should all focus on building our life with good habits—the more the better. As we do, our bad habits will wither away. Benjamin Franklin stated: “Your net worth to the world is usually determined by what remains after your ‘bad habits’ are subtracted from your ‘good ones.’”
God wants us to control all aspects of our conduct. “As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:14-16). Conduct is how we live. Everything God does is holy and righteous and that is how He wants us to live. Let your conduct be synonymous with good behavior, with plenty of good habits.
Start each morning the moment you wake up. I deliberately developed myself into an early riser. I awake each morning at 4:30 and try to go to bed at the same approximate time each night. That allows me to wake up raring to go, and it also allows me to fall asleep quickly. It is important to establish a regular cycle for sleep each night; nature itself is governed by cycles.
I do that seven days a week because I prefer to wake up each day feeling raring to go. It is hard to wake up with vigor and vitality if you are getting irregular hours of sleep each day. If you get five hours of sleep one night, nine the next, and six after that, it is hard on your body clock. If you sleep in on the weekends, you will feel groggy on Sunday or Monday morning, as you will feel sleep-deprived and have to reestablish that habit.
On rising, my morning routine begins with 20 to 30 minutes of meditation, followed by prayer and, a couple of days a week, exercise. I shower and dress and then do some Bible study, read an article or two on theTrumpet.com, check the news and get some healthy nourishment into my body. Now I am ready to begin my workday around 7:30 a.m. Many of you may be doing something similar as you start your day. The aim is to fill out the first few hours each day with good habits and a strong start. There are a host of other things you can do throughout the day that would fall into the “good habits” category.
We all must develop good habits in our spiritual life and keep our priorities straight. If you don’t, you are going to suffer. We all have to put the Kingdom of God first in our lives. You should never neglect prayer, Bible study, meditation and fasting. These are good habits that we must be practicing.
If you neglect any of them, spiritual lethargy will begin to set in. Once you compromise with them, you are forming a bad habit instead. If you continue that long enough, you will become prey for Satan! He is a destroyer and a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). He can devour those who have become spiritually weak. He desires for you to develop bad habits because they weaken you. Those steeped in bad habits become easy prey for him. Do not give Satan the opportunity to destroy you! Fill your life with good habits.
God’s Word is full of things God commands and wants us to do. He gives these commands and instructions for our good. “Ye shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord your God, and his testimonies, and his statutes, which he hath commanded thee. And thou shalt do that which is right and good in the sight of the Lord: that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest go in and possess the good land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers” (Deuteronomy 6:17-18).
God wants us to do those things that are right and good for our own benefit. He wants us to be diligent about keeping His commandments. He commands that we do the right! He wants us to be in the habit of obedience to Him.
An unlimited amount of good habits can be formed in everything we do. Each one protects us from the devastating effects of a bad habit.
Give thought to add more good habits to your life—it is a powerful tool. Remember that our life is made up of the time we have been given. Use that time for good. Strive to develop a life overflowing with good habits.