Keystone Habits (Being Challenge)
February 24, 2021
Introduction: Keystone Habits
Watch Week 1 Video
SPIRITUAL KEYSTONE HABITS: Matthew 11:29 MSG – “Walk with me and work with me – watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.”
We need to develop the necessary habits that will automatically put us in a position to make good decisions.
Why are habits important? Habits form because the brain is looking for ways to save effort, be efficient… make certain actions routine to be able to ramp down more often or be able to put energy and focus into other areas.
(Author Charles Duhigg introduces the concept of) KEYSTONE HABITS: A habit that people introduce into their lives that unintentionally carries over into other aspects of their lives…. It provides multiplied benefits. (exercising regularly, flossing your teeth)
1 Timothy 4:7 – Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness.
All four Gospels show that one of Jesus’ first actions when He started His ministry was choosing His disciples. From the very beginning, He was committed to a community of like-minded people. If anyone could have been self-sufficient, it’s Jesus… but Jesus was committed to His community.
The more you look into Jesus life, you find he didn’t just have a group of 12 friends.
Jesus had , , , and also 1 – God was at the center. While it’s true you also have God to be with you and for you perhaps when no one else is, you were created for relationships – with God certainly, but also with others.
Your community will be unique in size, and it won’t always be fun or easy. You’ll have conflict with people you are closest to, sometimes over serious things, sometimes over trivial things. The main question to ask is: Are you on the same mission… Is your community following Jesus? The people that you surround yourself with will influence you whether you like it or not. So who is in your community?
Jesus had a regular habit of studying Scripture. He was constantly surrounded by Scripture at the temple or synagogues. In the only recorded story of Jesus as a child, He was at the temple learning from the rabbis (Luke 2:52). If we want to grow in wisdom, there is no better way than through the Scriptures.
Tim Keller remarked there are 1800 Bible verses where Jesus is speaking… 180 of them are quoting Scripture. That’s 10%!
Jesus appears to the Disciples (while they are debating whether Jesus actually was alive again, He just appears to them & teaches one last thing) Luke 24:36-40, 41-45, 46-49:
Jesus taught the disciples (and us) that Scripture:
- v. 46-47 – explains Who Jesus is
- v. 48-49 – that we are witnesses of Who Jesus is
Studying Scripture helps you discover who God is and who you are.
The purpose of this challenge is to grow in our relationship with God. The success of any relationship starts with communication.
Even though we live in a time where the devices in our pockets have up to 7 million times the memory and 100,000 times faster processing than the computer that landed a man on the moon just 50 years ago, the best way to communicate with God remains the same.
In the four Gospels, Jesus practiced prayer or taught on prayer nearly 50 times. Jesus is shown praying alone, praying in public, praying early in the morning, praying in the evening, praying before meals, praying before important decisions, and praying before and after healings.
We may know how to pray but we can seek to grow & learn just as the disciples did. The disciples noticed there was something about the way Jesus communicated with God that was different.
Prayer was a priority in Jesus’ life at all times and in all circumstances.
Is prayer a priority in your life? Many of us say we believe in the power of prayer, but our prayers show otherwise. Look back at the last week of your life: If God answered every one of you prayer requests, what would be different in the world today?
We can get so busy, so preoccupied, that we don’t take time to be quiet and connect with God. The habit of seeking solitude gives us opportunity to simply be in relationship with God.
If anyone was busy, it was Jesus… In one day, written in the first chapter of Mark, Jesus:
Following that full day, Jesus does not decide to sleep in…
He sought to be alone with God. He knew He needed to be in touch with God to do His work.
To truly discover and fulfill God’s purpose for us, we must spend regular time with God.
There is a common practice of “shocking” pools to kill contaminants so it is safe to swim… Believe it or not, this is a beautiful image of living on mission and doing what Jesus calls us to do. When we interact with this world, we are exposed to “germs” of brokenness and darkness. We are bombarded by bad news and the world’s contaminants. Quite often, our bodies, our brains, our souls need a shock. We need a place where we can go to consistently hear good news… to shock our system back. The church, the gathering of God’s people, is the place we go to do that.
Worshiping with God’s people is something Jesus practiced and modeled:
The church is the consistent place where we get the opportunity to open the Word of God to declare the reason Jesus came:
It is important for the church to be God’s representatives in the world, to truly be His hand and feet. To be passionate and knowledgeable about God, we need to worship together regularly.
Jesus instituted the church. At the end of time, when Jesus comes back the Bible says that He’ll return for “His bride,” which is the church. The church wasn’t optional to Jesus. It has been, is, and always will be central to His plan. Can you truly love Jesus without choosing church?