“Let us search out and examine our ways, and turn back to the Lord” — Lamentations 3:40
“Do not just slay your demons, dissect them and find what they’ve been feeding on.” — A Man Frozen in Time
“We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time”
— T.S. Eliot
It’s a cultural norm to try to break our bad habits. We do this wrong and that wrong and Lord knows we do that too much. So we force ourselves to quit.
And luckily, when we fail, we have countless excuses to point to. We’re only human.
The fact of the matter is that it’s incredibly challenging to change our ways for the long term. We are creatures of habit and we’re constantly reverting to what is comfortable.
But it’s not so simple. We’ve already accepted human nature and we know these things. As Christians, we’ve even recognized we have the choice to be better than that.
The challenge in self-exploration is in how painful and terrifying it can be to dig deeper. To uncover why these habits exist in the first place and thoroughly search our souls. We don’t take the time to discover or maybe we don’t want to admit why we chose to continue down the wrong path.
Perhaps the bigger challenge is we have to continually ask the Holy Spirit to enter in and clean us up. Allow this to take root inside us and interrupt our habits. Then, in order to follow through in this renewal, we have turn away from some former desires. If we’ve asked for that presence, we’re held more accountable for our actions.
Although it’s a real challenge, God promises this act is worth it. If we know ourselves well enough and admit from where our tendencies derived, we will have so much more room for the One who counts. With this spirit, we will trump the little demons who try to pick at our souls daily. We will go through the same hardships, but with much more strength.
The ability to know thyself and then act with self control brings with it peace of mind and contentment. Thanks to God, this is much more doable. It’s not up to only us.