We need to exercise our spiritual muscles. As being a follower of Christ means not to be a follower of the crowd and the fads of the foolish. Pop culture has lost touch with God and the truth he has for his people. Getting rid of old habits that are reactive and irresponsible is hard work, needing new focus and a healthy dose of discipline. Putting on new habits and being proactive is difficult when others are trying to sabatage your efforts.
The Old Way Has to Go
17 -19And so I insist—and God backs me up on this—that there be no going along with the crowd, the empty-headed, mindless crowd. They've refused for so long to deal with God that they've lost touch not only with God but with reality itself. They can't think straight anymore. Feeling no pain, they let themselves go in sexual obsession, addicted to every sort of perversion. 20 -24But that's no life for you. You learned Christ! My assumption is that you have paid careful attention to him, been well instructed in the truth precisely as we have it in Jesus. Since, then, we do not have the excuse of ignorance, everything—and I do mean everything—connected with that old way of life has to go. It's rotten through and through. Get rid of it! And then take on an entirely new way of life—a God-fashioned life, a life renewed from the inside and working itself into your conduct as God accurately reproduces his character in you.
- Ephesians 4:17-24 The Message
But don't let it faze you. Stick with what you learned and believed, sure of the integrity of your teachers—why, you took in the sacred Scriptures with your mother's milk! There's nothing like the written Word of God for showing you the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God's way. Through the Word we are put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for us. -2 Timothy 3:14 The Message
This brings us to the next habit, "Begin with the End in Mind."