Topic: What Provokes You?
Examine yourself and learn what provokes you to do the behavior you want to be free from. Does stress or some other negative emotion cause you to turn to your bad habit? Do you do it when you are bored? Do you do it when you are lonely?
Do you do it every morning? For example, you might never be tempted to eat ice cream and popcorn at 10 a.m., but you are
tempted to do it every evening when you watch television. Is your bad habit connected to some other activity that you do?
My daughter Laura loves Diet Pepsi. For the most part she has stopped drinking it, but I have noticed that it’s when she is
frustrated or extremely tired that she says emphatically,
“Today I am having a Diet Pepsi!” It is her comfort food.
Drinking an occasional Diet Pepsi may not be a problem, but if your habit is to gamble or take drugs when you feel frustrated
or stressed, then it is a more urgent matter. Ask God to show you if there is a connection between your habit and other
things. Sometimes understanding why we do something is the doorway to freedom.
See if you can find a pattern, and if you do, it may help you avoid the habit by avoiding the thing that triggers it. At the very least, understanding the connection may help you be more prepared to resist the temptation. If you tend to overeat when
you’re bored, you can either not let yourself get bored or you can find another healthier habit to fill your time than eating excessively.
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If you shop when you’re unhappy as a way of comforting yourself emotionally, then recognizing the pattern can help you find a more biblical way of dealing with your unhappiness.