“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him” (Psalm 34:8).
When my grandson was three, he went with his daddy to a convenience store in Mexico. While they were waiting at the counter to pay, Nathanael spotted some candy, which he immediately wanted. Picking it up, he placed it with the other purchase, saying, “No necesito!” a new phrase he had just been taught.
As you may have guessed, the words mean, “I don’t need (this!)” Whether he fully understood or not, he was right. And dad added his firm “No.” Chuckling over this incident, I decided to put the expression on the fridge, hoping it would remind me that I don’t always need what I go there to get. Sweets, especially ice cream, have been a temptation for years. But they not only add on the pounds, they make my physical condition worse.
The experiment failed. The words seldom stopped me! I simply ignored them, if I actually read them at all. And that’s what harmful habits are like. Do you find that you tell yourself, “I need this” when you know in your heart you really don’t? Or “I shouldn’t, but just a little can’t hurt me?” Romans 6:11 says, “Look upon yourselves as dead to the appeal and power of sin, but alive and sensitive to the call of God?” (J. B. Phillips’ paraphrase).
Notice there are two things involved: saying no to what is wrong, and yes to God. Pulling away from what will hurt and harm, and drawing nearer to the Lord. As we focus on delightful and satisfying fellowship with Him, we’ll turn to Him more and more, seeking His will in order to have our deepest needs met. Old harmful habits can be turned into healthy habits as we remember Christ has indeed set us free.
“Dear Lord, we confess our faults to you, and praise You for Your mercy and forgiveness. Help us through Your guidance and grace, to turn to You alone when we crave things that are destructive. Then we will taste and see that You are good.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Beth Cottrill lives in a small town in rural Saskatchewan, Canada, with her recently retired pastor/teacher husband, Bob. She finds living with Attention Deficit Disorder, depression, osteo-arthritis and a stroke of several years ago a challenge, but also training for a ministry to others. She loves animals, music, scrap booking, making cards and being a grandma.