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The Danger of Bad Habits

Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Psalm 139:23-24

Bad habits—we all have them. Some affect us more severely than others, but all bad habits will affect us spiritually, physically, and emotionally. We must be aware of their harm.

Samson, a Bible character in the Old Testament book of Judges, is a good example of how a bad habit can cause us to lose our purpose in life. Judges 13:5 tells us that God had a special purpose for Samson when he was born. God blessed Samson with extra strength so that he could carry out the special job God had for him to do. He was to deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines. Israel had been under the control of the Philistines for 40 years.

When Samson was about twenty years old, he began to allow his fleshly desires to take over his life. He had a bad habit—women. He allowed his lust for women to control his life. This led him into immorality. Bad habits can take us further than we intend to stray. Before we know it, we can get deeper and deeper into a particular sin, and it begins to control our lives.

Bad habits can keep us longer than we want to stay. Just think of the alcoholics who just wanted to try a few beers. Think of the person who just wanted to try a little gambling and loses his savings, his family, and perhaps his job. We all know how overeating and other unwise habits can damage our health.

Bad habits certainly cost us more than we think they will. In Samson’s case, the woman he loved betrayed him, the Lord left him, the Philistines gouged out his eyes, and he lost his strength. We can read about this in Judges 16. 

Just as God had a purpose for Samson, He has a purpose for your life. Are some of your habits keeping you from fulfilling that purpose?

Georgia Andrus

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