I like the routine of the school year. Being a parent to two elementary kids, I enjoy the Summer fun but prefer the routine of the school year. However, by Friday I do enjoy going out to dinner or a football game or something else. Being on Facebook and Twitter, I am aware of so many who also enjoy getting out on the weekends. The possibilities are endless and sometimes life-altering. Before you stop reading, please be aware that adults as well as youth deal with many of these issues.
- The party that was stopped by police.
- The drink that put you over the edge and you wrecked your car.
- That Xanax to help you feel better only caused you more pain.
- The condom that broke and now your pregnant.
- The abortion you thought would fix everything still haunts you today.
- The fight with your parents that you regret.
- The cutting scars you still see.
- The throat problems because of throwing up dinner for a certain weight/skinny jean size.
- The mouth cancer you will get from dipping.
All of these things are possible outcomes to desiring a “get-a-way” on the weekends or even everyday habits because of the desire to be noticed or fit-in. Here are a few thoughts to help you make it the best weekend ever!
Check your feelings with God. James writes, “14But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” If we do not stop and think before acting we are going to end up in a place we don’t want and feel we cannot escape. Stop and think before acting. Check in with God.
Stay out of vulnerable situations. I worked the drive-thru window and as I handed out the food, I was invited to a certain party. The thought went through my mind that I could go but would not drink. I could act as the designated driver. I said, “Not this time.” Why? Because I knew it would be better to stay away than put myself in a vulnerable situation. I knew this one girl’s reputation and I was feeling it. I thought about all the fun we could have if we went out. I went to youth group instead not because it was so much fun, but because I needed to stay out of vulnerable situation. If you can’t afford the food or shoes do not go in. If you can’t just look then don’t look at all. If you can’t afford the payment don’t go on the car lot. It is better to stay above reproach and out of vulnerable situations.
There are no quick fixes. Bad habits do not go down easily. It will take time, effort, and hard work. Choosing to go against what your mind and body have grown accustomed to is not easy. Calling it a bad habit is just the nice way of saying you have an addiction. You have to want to quit. No matter the pleasure you have in the habit, if it causes you pain it must stop. The pain may not be as bad as the pleasure is good, so you will need to make hard choices. It will take a series of short goals to get to a permanent one.
Keep a long view approach. This is so important to remember. Do you have a life goal? As kids we talked about what we wanted to be when we grew up. Often we forget about those long-term goals because of short-term desires. Countless people have sacrificed their long-term goal on the altar of passion and desire. They got pregnant, incarcerated, or wrecked because of losing sight of the long-term goals. Consider today what you want people to say about you at your funeral. Start working now toward being that person. Every decision counts.
Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Psalm 37:3