Old Habits

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      SWORDS Bible Study:  Old Habits

      By Mari

      (All caps for emphasis only)

      (SWORDS: Strong Women Of Rightly Dividing Studies)

      2Ti 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

      Sometimes life is difficult because we live in old habits in our old man, in our old thoughts, in an old mind-set, not realizing we are in these old places.  We may not even take in, this is what we are doing. It can sadly lead us to losing our joy, our focus on Christ and the greater picture of Him living in us…and we in Him!

      Have you ever gazed at a sunset and found yourself dreaming of distant places…an uncommon life in a different location? Not really knowing what that un-named longing is really all about… Sort of a feeling of sorrow, loss mixed up with yearning, possibilities… perhaps a more exotic life…

      When this happens to me, as it has most all my life, I found a favorite phrase that comes to mind from an old novel. It seemed to fit somehow and often I said it out loud….

      “I had a farm in Africa at the foot of the ngong hills….”

      Then one day not long ago, I stood in the yard looking out over the valley and river to the sunlit mountains. A new phrase came unbidden to my mind. I tried it out loud…

      “I have a house in America at the foot of the Pioneer mountains…”

      No sorrow, no loss mixed up with an un-named yearning, but a sudden inner stillness.  I realized this was all about an old habit, an old way of thinking. Even my spoken statement of a house in America…stopped me in my inner tracks. I realized it was a simple modification of old habits, renewing themselves differently. I was still seeking comfort in my earthly surroundings, not in Christ.

      My soul, full of thanksgiving, and for the first- time realization of that unknown yearning, possibilities, exotic life had already been fulfilled! Not in my house in America, but in believing on the Lord and all He has done for me. His acceptance of me in the Beloved. My true prospects before me in Christ! I saw clearly my hope and calling as never before!

      Eph 1:6  To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

      Eph_1:18  The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,


      Understanding hit me that I was living in the old man…in the old habits of my mind. Letting my heart lead instead of the Spirit of God.  Old habits of the flesh had crippled my joy with wanting, yearning for things that are already mine! Right NOW, in Christ!

      Whether I am wandering in dreams of the Scottish Highlands, or in the middle of the Egyptian desert on an archeological dig, or right here in Wisdom, Montana…all my treasures are in Christ!

      Home.    Love.   Safety.   Purpose.  Eternal life.  Comfort.


      Our home is not in this world. We live in houses here….some of us.  It may not be a million-dollar house, or even a house that has walls or a roof that does not leak.

      Our HOME is in heavenly places! We are waiting to go home after our work as Ambassadors is done here on earth.  However, all believers have been blessed with ALL spiritual blessings in heavenly places.

      Eph 2:6  And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

      Eph 1:3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:



      We all want to be loved. We all want to love.

      Love can bring excitement and/or contentment and peace. It can also bring incredible grief when lost or separated from a loved one.

      Love often eliminates the sense of separation or loneliness.

      The love that truly and completely sustains a believer is the love of God. We love God, because He loved us first! It is an incredible faith to know the love of God, and to love God.


      Rom 5:8  But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.


      2Th 3:5  And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.


      Rom 8:35  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 


      Rom 8:38  For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 


      Rom 8:39  Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. 



      We who are believers are SAFE for eternity in the power of God.  We have been saved, sealed and accepted by God for eternity! And here in the body He has given us many, many tools.

       1Co 1:18  For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.


      Read Eph 6:10-20 for a great example of the tools the Lord has given us.  He has given us His word.


      It is completely FREEING to know, believe and trust in the purpose of God for our life.  As a believer we KNOW what our purpose is, who we are, where we belong and that we are fulfilled in Christ! The word of God gives us all this information clearly!

      Without knowing God, many do struggle to find their OWN purpose.

      Looking for one’s own purpose can be a constant inner battle of being determined to do or achieve something in life. Not knowing who they are, or what they are to do.  Folks are often worried about the purpose of their life, feeling unfulfilled. Always searching for:

      Who am I?

      WE believers know we are the children of God and Ambassadors of Christ!


      Gal 3:26  For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.


      2Co 5:20  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

      Where do I belong?

      We believers belong to God, bought with a price! We are members the body of Christ, the new creature.

      1Co 6:20  For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

      1Co 7:23  Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men.

      Rom 12:5  So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

      When do I feel fulfilled?

      It is not about a feeling.  It is about the fact of faith in the word of God.


      2Co 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.


      Rom 8:28  And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.


      2Ti 1:9  Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,


      1Ti 6:6  But godliness with contentment is great gain.


      We often live selfishly to serve our own purposes in our lives. This is living in the old man!

      Our purpose as believers is the high calling of Christ!

      Php 3:14  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus

      Our purpose is not to add Christ into our lives, like a coat we put on and take off at will. We are not trying to clean up our old man and be better people! It cannot be done!

      Our purpose is to make Christ our life!

      Gal 2:20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. 

      Rom 6:8  Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: 

      Rom 6:9  Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. 

      Rom 6:10  For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. 

      Rom 6:11  Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. 

      Eternal life.

      There is a verse in a song by Queen: “Who wants to live forever?” And the ending is: “Forever is our today…Who waits forever anyway?”  I love the tune, but not the false narrative behind it.

      You see, we will ALL live forever.  Eternally.  The question is where you will live for eternity? There are only two choices.

      Heaven or Hell.

      Believers choose Heaven, the gift of eternal life with the Lord forever.

      Unbelievers by their very unbelief, choose Hell.


      Rom 6:23  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

      1Ti 6:12  Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

      1Ti 6:19  Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

      Tit 1:2  In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

      Tit 3:7  That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

      2Th 1:6  Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 

      2Th 1:7  And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 

      2Th 1:8  In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 

      2Th 1:9  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; 



      We all seek out comfort! From emotional, physical, mental discomfort over many things! Comfort is an ever-changing experience that holds infinite possibilities, so they cannot all be addressed! But we all need and want comfort, solace, relief, shoring up under stress et al.

      Believers find comfort in Jesus Christ! In the home, love, safety, purpose, eternal life, and the express comfort of our God! It is always here, is always sufficient and always and forever ours by faith and hope in the word of God!


      Rom 15:4  For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.


      2Co 1:3  Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;


      2Co 1:4  Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.


      2Co 13:11  Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.


      I hope you will make certain you are not living and yearning in old habits. Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith, or in old habits of the mind.

      2Co 13:5  Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?


      Understand who you are in Christ in all you think and do.

      Everyone in Christ has absolutely everything…forever.

      Rejoice in Christ!

      Rom 5:2  By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

      Php 4:4  Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.



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