“You dropped your cigarette on the roadway”, I said as I pointed him to it.
As I walked away, my mind ran across my spirit to try interpret what was now rushing up in me.
Was that needful? Was I supposed to tell him so? What would have Jesus done in this situation? As I pondered obliviously on these questions, I found myself introspecting more than anything else.
My father used to smoke. I remember when at times, he would send us to go buy cigarettes from nearby shops. I reckon there is a lot you could say about such parenting. That’s however not the issue here, he liked a certain type of cigarette which was rich in menthol. It probably is the reason why I also like anything minty till now. Obviously when coming back, the kid in me, would put the cigarette in my mouth,just to taste the menthol, without lighting it up of course!
My dad was a “clean” smoker, after a smoke, he would take endearmints to freshen up his breath. This went on for years,until he suddenly quit smoking. When I asked him why he quit, he only said, he felt it was time to do so. I recall talking to my sister about it and she said that she had prayed and even fasted for him to quit. So talk about coincidences happening when we pray?!
Everyone has a “cigarette” that they smoke. It is that habit that we build up and have been mastering over a period of time. Life in itself is a habitual habit. Humans are creatures of habit, the habits we create and habits we pick up. Habits are neutral, we give them their positive or negative.
As I continued to ponder on the dropped cigarette and how I told the guy that he had lost his cigarette,i began also to focus on the heart of why we stick to habits.
Naturally humans crave to be systemic, it creates a subconscious safe-net of existence. It then reveals that actually, it’s really not about the habits we keep as much as it is about the underlying need that we desire to be met.
“All things were made by him; and without him was NOT ANY THING made that was made” – John 1:3 KJV
Everything that exist in nature and even from synthesis,was created by God. This means that EVERYTHING that exists on Earth finds its source back to God. In essence then, God created everything that we have in existence now. The departure from his creation is when what we create as a by-product from His provision becomes the point of perversion to lead us away from Him. The latter is the birthing of idolatry and for both the good and bad habits from repeated cycles based on the created, we displace God from His central place in our lives.
It’s not about the cigarette, alcohol, food, music,money, sex, pornography, stealing and any other vice of bad or good habit that exist. It has always been about what does that habit seek to replace!
I have been on this rediscovering phase. Striving to pinpoint why I like certain things, why I do things a certain way etc. I have discovered that behind everything there is always something! Things aren’t always what they seem! Strive not to be “surfacy”in life, always seek to see the deeper things.
Needless to point out, as I continued to ponder on this incident, I wrestled with whether I was right to inform him that he had lost his “bad habit”or I should have kept quiet. We are either helping people continue their habits or helping them stop them, regardless of whether it’s a good or bad habit. Just check where you stand in line with what you stand on.
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of UNBELIEF, in DEPARTING from the living God. But EXHORT one another DAILY, while it is called TODAY; lest any of you be HARDENED through the DECEITFULNESS of sin” – Hebrews 3:12-13 KJV
As a disciple of Jesus, the exhortation is that you encourage others to stay in and follow Him in every way away from anything that seeks to take away attention to a God who loves us!
We can put an end to all that keeps us away from Him by first turning back to Him consistently.