Sunday, September 14, 2008

spiritual Habits

"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you"
~James 4:8a (Amer Stand Version)

This week we started off the Fall High School Bible Study class at St. John by talking about habits.
They say that it takes just 21 days to make or break a habit, so whether it's bad habits like chewing your nails and picking your nose or good habits like walking for exercise or flossing after meals, stick with it for at least 3 weeks and it should become second-nature.

The first of six good habits we want to adopt is Hang time, specifically hanging out with God. H for HABITS, H for Hang time. How do you start this habit? Simple, by spending some TWAG!

TAWG stands for Time Alone With God. Can you spare 15 minutes a day? If you do, God will use that time to grow you. Less anxiety, deeper, stronger faith, feeling closer to God and little by little your character will become more like His- love, peace patience, kindness, gentleness, and self-controlled (Galatians 5:22-23). Who wouldn't want that?

There's lots of ways to spend TAWG, everybody has their own style. Here are just a few ideas.
  • Take Jesus for a walk, instead of listening to your ipod, use exercise time for prayer.
  • Portals of Prayer The official LCMS devotion booklet
  • Or other devotion books or magazines like Our Daily Bread or New Wineskins.
  • Reading the Bible, You coul djust read any part you like, as much or as little as you can read in the 10 minutes or half hour or whatever you decide to spend. You could follow a plan like the onw provided by the International Bible Society, or buy a Daily Bible or one that you can read through in a year. If you're too intimidated by a KJV, RSV, or even NIV, try a paraphrase like the Living Bible or the Message.
  • Pray- just talk to God, no special format or training required.
  • Journal- instead of writing to your diary, write in your diary TO God. Some people just record whatever their prayer requests were for that day.
  • Sing- challenge yourself, how many praise songs or hymns do you know the lyrics to?
  • Listen to music together- Can't sing? There is a TON of great Christian music out there, rock , rap, pop, blues, country, and of course "Gospel." Listen for at least 15 minutes a day everyday and see if it doesn't make a difference in your moods and attitudes.
  • Meditate or "peace-out." I don't mean to sit in the lotus position chanting "ohm," but DO try to find quiet time when you either clear your mind or at least focus your mind on Jesus or some Bible passage. (in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:7).
Next week we'll talk about the big A-

PLEASE COME! 9AM in the Church Basement. The more people who come, the more fun.

Me ka pule,

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