Years ago when I was going through a difficult time, a counselor warned me about four deadly habits that can paralyze your time and energy.
She called them time wasters. But these four deadly habits are not only time wasters; they can also steal your emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being. They can render us useless, ineffective, and depressed. I can testify. Been there, done that.
What’s the solution?
Is there hope to overcome them?
What does God’s Word have to say about these? Does He offer any help?
Worry is unproductive: “Can one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Matthew 6:27 NIV
Worry borrows from the future: “So don’t worry about tomorrow…Today’s trouble is enough for today.” Matthew 6:34 NLT
Worry zaps our energy: “Worry weighs a person down.” Proverbs 12:25 NLT
Worry replaces prayer: “Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.” Philippians 4:5-7 The Message
Fear can leave you lonely and ineffective and make you forget about God’s constant presence: “Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 NLT
Fear is the opposite of faith: “Jesus responded, ‘Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!'” Matthew 8:26 NLT
Fear assaults your true value: “‘And the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.'” Luke 12:7 NLT
Fear limits your potential: “But the man who received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground, and hid his master’s money….you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned, I would have received it back with interest.” (see Matthew 25:14-29 NIV)
Indecision can result in a lack of direction: “Who are those who fear the Lord? He will show them the path they should choose.” Psalm 25:12 NLT
Indecision can paralyze your future: “‘How long are you going to waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him!'” 1 Kings 17:21 NLT
Indecision will cause emotional distress and divide your loyalties: “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” Matthew 6:24 NLT
Procrastination is the enemy of good planning and wisdom: “My child, don’t lose sight of good planning and insight. Hang on to them, for they fill you with life and bring you honor and respect. They keep you safe on your way and keep your feet from stumbling.” Proverbs 3:21-23 NLT
Procrastination denies others God’s blessings: “Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it’s in your power to help them. If you can help your neighbor now, don’t say, ‘Come back tomorrow, and then I’ll help you.'” Proverbs 3:27-28 NLT
Procrastination can lead to poverty: “If you are too lazy to plow in the right season, you will have no food at the harvest.” Proverbs 20:4 NLT
Procrastination is a master of excuses: ” The lazy person is full of excuses, saying, ‘If I go outside, I might meet a lion in the street and be killed!” Proverbs 21:13 NLT
These four deadly habits can creep in without warning and catch us off guard. They are not only time wasters; they can drain our emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being.
God Will Help Us Overcome
But even though at times we’ll struggle with these temptations and habits, God can and will help us overcome them.
What about you? Do you struggle with an of these four deadly habits? Which one bothers you the most? How has God helped you (or is helping you) to overcome them? What encouragement can you offer to someone who needs help with these? What Scripture has encouraged you the most in dealing with these habits?