BREAKING THE CYCLE OF BAD HABITS
“For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” - Romans 8:6
Most people try to eliminate bad habits by using their willpower. However, to be free of bad habits, cravings, and addictions
permanently, you need more. You need God’s help. Unfortunately, the majority of people in this world are not yielded to God and His
ways. In this world, one’s appetite is the ruling force. This can take on a variety of forms. An intense appetite for sex becomes lust. An
insatiable desire for food or power leads to greed. And the list goes on and on, with the spirit of selfishness being the root cause behind
The Word of God came to us on our level as Jesus, yet the law of sin and death continues to operate in the earth. Those who habitually
fix their minds on carnal or fleshly desires set into motion the vicious cycle of addiction. However, there is an alternative! According to
Romans 8:2, the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus makes us free from the law of sin and death. Also, those who set their minds on
the Kingdom of God pursue spiritual things. And although fleshly desires profit nothing (John 6:63), yielding instead to the leading of
God’s Spirit produces life and life in abundance, which is truly living.
Some practical steps one can take to aid the process of deliverance. Remember, faith without works is dead. For starters, realize you are
what you think (Proverbs 23:7). Ask yourself, “How did the thought pattern begin that led to the addictive behavior or habit?” Was it
framed by people whom you spend time with? Was it fed by words and images you were exposed to? More importantly, you have the
power to change all of the above!
Finally, your mind must be renewed by reading, studying, and meditating upon the Word of God daily! You are the only one who can
renew your mind; no one else will or can do it for you. To continue operating according to old thought patterns will only hinder your
ability to overcome old behavior. Refuse the devil’s lies that you are stuck, and that there is no way out. With God’s help, you can put
off the old man (your old thought life with its corresponding habits), and you can put on the new man (your new way of thinking, which is
based upon God’s Word) and along with it, an abiding victory over all that has ever held you in bondage!
The cycle will break when we yield to the Holy Spirit and focus on the Word of God.
A Prayer for Today
Father, thank you for your Word today; I know that as I choose to focus on your Word you will begin to renew my mind and make me
more like you. Holy Spirit, lead me today, so that I will not fulfill the lust of the flesh!
Help me to walk in life and abundance, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Adapted from Creflo Dollar Ministries
OVERCOME STRESS, PRESSURE & ANXIETY
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God that
the peace of God, which surpasses understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”- Philippians 4:6-7
Wake up early! Take the dogs out. Feed the kids. Don’t miss the bus. Finish that project. Meet that deadline. Try not to respond to the
negativity. Pay the bills. Block out the haters. Don’t be late again. Pick up the slack!
A normal day may feel something like this. The American Institute of Stress (AIS) reports that stress is the root cause of 60% of all
human illness and disease and 3 out of 4 doctor’s visits are for stress-related ailments costing Americans $300 billion every year in
medical bills and lost productivity.
How do we overcome the suffocating pressure of stress, worry and anxiety? The Bible tells us in Philippians 4:6-7 to “be anxious for
nothing,” basically meaning, don’t be overly freaked out about anything. Instead, follow the 3P model for guaranteed stress relief—
Pray, Petition, Praise!
Pray—Our prayers should always be directed to our Heavenly Father, through the Son (Jesus), by the Spirit. Simply invite God into your
situation by telling Him what’s going on and how overwhelming it is.
Petition—Simply ask God for what you want him to do and remember, there’s nothing wrong with venting your frustrations to God.
Keep it real but don’t get so carried away that you forget about the 3rd P.
Praise—Be thankful! Thanksgiving proves that you trust God. Thanking someone for something you have not seen them do yet speaks
volumes of your confidence in their credibility. Thank God! It’s already done.
When you feel PRESSURE, POSSESS your PEACE by PRAYER, PETITION, and PRAISE!
A Prayer for Today
"Heavenly Father, thank you for hearing our prayers. Your word tells us to cast our cares on you so we're trusting you and releasing all
of our stresses to you today. Have your way! We ask you to give us peace according to Philippians 4:7 and that you help us with our
unbelief. We thank you in advance and commit our concerns into your hands, in Jesus' name we pray. Amen."
MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION EVERY TIME
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding, but in all your ways, acknowledge Him and he will
direct your path.” - Proverbs 3:5-6
Every season of life is overloaded with major decisions that could ultimately change the course of your life. Should I apply for that job?
Should I hang out with that kid? What should I say in that social setting? How should I dress? Who should I marry? Should I spend
money on that? Are they good for me? Is this the right move for my family?
Making the wrong choice can have devastating consequences, which is why we need a sure way of making the right decision every
time. Proverbs 3:5-6 encourages us to trust God (his word and his voice) over everything that seems right to us—even our survival
instincts. God leads us much like a GPS. Christian Comedian Michael Junior refers to this as “God’s Positioning System”. When you’re
driving, your GPS guides you from a satellite perspective much higher than you making it more accurate in determining which routes to
take in your commute. Many of us have made the mistakes of ignoring the voice of the GPS and gone our own way only to find
ourselves stuck in worse traffic. The GPS doesn’t give up on us even when we ignore it. It will reroute us when we’re off course. It will
wait for us when we’re sitting still, and it will stay with us until we reach our destination.
God is a greater guide than a GPS. If we will stop everything before making decisions, small and large, and acknowledge him by asking
for his help, we are guaranteed that he will direct our paths. If God directs you, you’ll never end up in a dead end.
A Prayer for Today
"Father, I thank you for leading me and keeping me. Your word says that if I acknowledge you in all my ways then you would direct my
path. I need your help making this major decision and I need you speak to me clearly so I don’t miss your voice. Your thoughts and
perspectives are way higher than mine, so I trust you to bring me to the place you desire for me to be. Have your way in this situation. I
thank you in advance for making it all work out for my good. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen!"
PROTECTED BY LOVE
Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and
persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven. - Matthew 5:44-45
Love your enemies... turn the other cheek... to most people that sounds like a pretty weak way to handle someone who's causing them
trouble. But, the truth is, it's the most powerful way there is. It's the way Jesus did it, and His way never fails.
Do you remember when Jesus went back to Nazareth and the religious folks were angry with Him and wanted to push Him off a cliff?
What happened? He just walked right past them, and no one could lay a finger on Him. Another time they decided to stone Him, and
He didn't retaliate that time either. He just walked off. No one could touch Him.
When Jesus walked through that crowd, He wasn't afraid. He knew they couldn't hurt Him because He was walking in the love of God.
When Jesus said to turn the other cheek, He didn't mean for you to stand there and have your brains beaten out. He meant for you to
stand there in love and in faith believing that the protecting power of God that accompanies that love would keep you safe. He meant
for a man to swing at you and not be able to hit you!
You may think to yourself, "well that was Jesus, and I don't have that kind of love," or "Pray for me, I'm not there yet."
Well, the Bible says you do. Romans 5:5 tells us that the love of God is shed abroad in your heart by the Holy Spirit. All you have to do
is make the decision to be motivated by that love rather than your own human feelings.
We know God's love never fails, so you don't have to be afraid of failure anymore. In fact, you don't have to be afraid of anything. If
you're walking in the love of God, you're living the most powerful kind of life there is.
You are given uncommon protection when you walk in the love of God.
A Prayer for Today
"Father, help me to walk in your Love today. I will no longer be afraid of my enemies because I know I'm protected by your love.
Thank you for always keeping me safe, in Jesus' name. Amen."
Adapted from Kenneth Copeland Ministries
STIR UP YOUR DREAMS
“Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you...” - 2 Timothy 1:6
Does life seem stale or mundane? You may need to simply stir up what God has placed on the inside of you. Stir up those gifts, stir up
those dreams, stir up those talents inside. Start stretching yourself. You were created to be a dreamer and to pursue the desires God
has placed in your heart.
Scripture tells us that without vision, people perish. If you don’t have a dream or vision for your life, you’re not really going to reach your
fullest potential. Maybe at one time you had a dream, but you went through some disappointments or setbacks. Things didn’t turn out
the way you planned. But here’s a key: when one dream dies, dream another dream. Just because it didn’t work out the way you had it
planned doesn’t mean that God doesn’t have another plan. You cannot allow one disappointment or even a series of disappointments
to convince you that your dream is over. It’s time to dig in your heels and hold on to the promises in your heart. Stir up those God-given
dreams today and watch Him pour out His favor and blessing on you and fulfill every desire in your heart!
God has put greatness on the inside of you, so dream BIG! You have gifts and talents that were given to you by God and He wants to
use those things to do great things in your life. It's our responsibility to activate our faith by asking the Lord to use the gift he put in you.
A Prayer for Today
"Father, I come humbly to You. I give You my past, my disappointments and my brokenness. Fill me with Your hope and expectation
and give me the dreams and desires that You have in store for me in Jesus’ name. Amen."
Adapted from Joel Osteen Ministries
Day Six & Seven
We hope you're enjoying the GODSTRONG series!
For the next two days we would like you to navigate to the
Christian World Ministries Facebook page.
There you will find a few different posts made available to
you for devotion time.
Please leave a comment letting us know you're there!