“If you quit ONCE it becomes a habit. Never quit!!!” – Michael Jordan
Congratulations, you’ve made it to Part 4, the final installment in our series! In our previous posts, we’ve discussed:
- Why quitting can be beneficial
- How to quit doing things in your own strength
- What to do after you’ve quit
Today, we’re going to talk about forming good habits. Contrary to our introductory quote from superstar-athlete, Michael Jordan, I happen to think that quitting is an EXCELLENT habit to form.
I discussed in Part 3 how God is faithful (after we’ve surrendered our own plans) to give us the words to say and the guidance we need about what to do next. The Lord has shown me over and over again that HIS plans and purposes are so much better and higher than anything I can devise. Scripture verifies this many times over. Here are just a few places you can find it: Isaiah 55:8-9, Jeremiah 29:11, 1 Corinthians 2:9, and Proverbs 19:21
But how exactly does that work? Will you suddenly hear a booming voice from the clouds?
Well, most people don’t hear God speak in an audible voice. It’s more like a subtle nudge in your inner self, a softly quiet inner voice or feeling. Clear as mud, right?
The truth is that I can’t tell you exactly how God will speak to you. I can, however, tell you how He speaks to me. Most often, He speaks to me through Scripture. Part of a verse will leap off the page or screen to me, and I’ll have a sudden understanding that this is significant for me.
Sometimes, He speaks to me through the wisdom of others. I’ll be listening to a sermon or reading something another Christian has written, and in that moment, I find relevance for my own situation or answers to the questions I’ve been asking.
Other times, I will hear an inner answer to an issue I’ve been lifting up in prayer. This is rarer in frequency than the others, but it is the most significant of all. Hearing God’s voice changes me instantly. I can’t explain the process, but it is full of a power and peace outside of my own human grasp.
So, you might be asking, “Where do I start?”
- Start by quieting your thoughts and reaching out for God.
If you’re like me and have a racing mind with many burdens, this will be challenging at first. You can listen to soft praise music and read a few verses of Scripture, but then SIT STILL. Resist the urge to read several chapters at a time. If you are rushing to complete something quickly you will miss His presence altogether. This isn’t a race. Sitting before the Lord is NOT a waste of time. You need to quiet your emotions, your body, and your mind. Slowly breathe in and out.
- Begin to listen for His voice. Expect to hear from Him. In Isaiah 55:3a God reminds us, “Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen, and you will find life.”
- Do what He says.
Do you need to confess anything to Him? He knows how we feel already, but He wants us to tell him. Is he nudging you to do something? When the Holy Spirit speaks it is with gentleness, love and peace. He doesn’t condemn or shame, and he doesn’t tell us to do anything contrary to scripture.
- Repeat steps 1-3 over and over again. Be persistent. Even when you think you aren’t hearing anything from Him, don’t give up. He is FAITHFUL.
- Lift up things in prayer to him ALL THROUGHOUT your day. Start with the small things.
Do you need a close parking spot? Ask Him, believing you will receive it. Are you getting ready to make a difficult phone call? Before you dial that number, ask Him for the words to speak and trust that you will have them.
Hebrews 11:6 tells us that we must believe that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him. God is not moved by our need as much as he moved by our faith. Have faith, my friend! It will yield an incredible harvest in due time.
Pray: Father God, I believe you are speaking to me. Help me to hear from you. Expose the lies I am believing and replace them with Your Truth. Help me to be obedient to the Spirit’s promptings. This is the first day of a brand new way of life for me. Lead me higher up and deeper in.
(c) 2018 by Jennifer Greene