How to Never Stumble
2nd Peter 1 verse 3: His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life 5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.
10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters,[a] make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble, 11 and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
To never stumble pursue goodness. Dr. Calvin Miller said:
Battles are fought in our minds every day. When we begin to feel the battle is just too difficult and want to give up, we must choose to resist negative thoughts and be determined to rise above our problems. We must decide that we’re not going to quit. When we’re bombarded with doubts and fears, we must take a stand and say: “I’ll never give up! God’s on my side. He loves me, and He’s helping me! I’m going to make it!- Joyce Meyer
C.S. Lewis Quotes About Perseverance
God knows our situation; He will not judge us as if we had no difficulties to overcome. What matters is the sincerity and perseverance of our will to overcome them.
We all want progress, but if you’re on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive.
What saves a man is to take a step. Then another step.
Romans 5:3-4 More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,
The idea that best expresses the idea of godliness in the Pastoral Epistles is the Old Testament expression, “to fear the Lord,” which was almost a synonym of “believer” under the Old Covenant. Someone who fears the Lord does not live in terror of God, but has a healthy respect for God and seeks in both heart and in action to “love God” and not be offensive to God.
And so we come back to Paul’s teaching to Timothy said to “Train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” (4:7b-8)
In what ways did you train to become godly which have fallen by the way side. Were you changing for the better when you trained?
To overcome an addiction it is best to take the Bible very literally. If it says it, I believe it and I will live it. Others have other opinions about how to interpret the Bible. Don’t fight with them – explain what you believe and then try to find common ground with them.
Pray: Father, help me to have mutual affection for my Christian friends. Help me to love them, have peaceful fellowship with them and respect for them.
The Bible says that if we do these things we will never stumble and we will go to heaven. What will you do today to focus on doing these things every day?
Thomas Horvath in his book Sex, Drugs, Gambling and Chocolate said the following: “Addiction can be thought of as a bad habit. If you eliminate this bad habit, you will be creating a vacuum, an empty spot in your life. Nature abhors a vacuum. If you do not fill this vacuum with something new (like a good habit, a positive addiction), there is a significant risk that the addiction will return.
Imagine that your ultimate goal, as you understand yourself, is to serve others. You believe that serving others will give you the best happiness you can imagine. This goal is related to your value that human life is more important than anything else you can think of. In order to serve others, you will need to have something of value to them. Based on your natural talents, suppose that you decide to become a teacher. In order to become a good teacher, one who truley can serve others, you will need a variety of good habits. These good habits will assure that your preparation to become a teacher and your efforts as a teacher will be effective.”
What goals and habits can you develop to help to use up the time vacuum created by quitting gambling?
What person can you watch who lives in a way that you would like to live?
How can you arrange to spend more time talking to that person?
What routine can you start that will help you fight addiction. Such as reading a page or two each day of a quitting addiction book. Or getting involved in your church or helping with your favorite charity.
Youth is a time when our passions are strongest. Death seems far away, and to enjoy ourselves in this life sometimes seems to be everything. Many people over time place pleasure on a pedastol. Time would not permit me to tell you all the fruits this love of pleasure produces, and all the ways in which it may harm you. All things that give a feeling of excitement for the time, all things that drown thought and keep the mind in a constant whirl, and all things that please the senses and delight the flesh, these are the sort of things that have mighty power over your life. They owe their power to the love of pleasure. There is no surer way to get a seared conscience and a hard heart toward the things of God than to give way to the desires of the flesh and mind.
Every day we need to pray that we will increase our love of people and caring about how we can learn to be a soul winner instead of a lover of pleasure. Pleasure is great when it is not sinful, when it is done in the right way, at the right time. The ultimate pleasure for me is to see a sinner set free from their bondage and to see then now helping other people. Seek this first, then seek clean pleasure and you will be amazed at how the simple things in life will give you pleasure and how you will start to find fullness of joy in your life.
Read Proverbs 25, Matthew 2 and 2nd Corinthians 11
Continue to read the Purpose Driven Life
Say this morning noon and night: “This temptation will go away if I don’t act on it. If I give in it will return and it may be even stronger next time. If I don’t give in it will go away and someday it will go away for good. I have the self control to change”.
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.
Pray: Father help me to align with you because when I am doing things your way -we are more powerful than any substance can be.
Day one: Quitting addiction exercises
Day two: It is important to admit you are powerless
Day 3: Learn the right way to live
Day 4: Getting rid of negative emotions
Day 5: Remember – money lost is not yours. Don’t try to get it back or you will lose more.
Day 6: can you increase your pleasure by gambling?
Day 7: Staying clean in all ways helps you quit the addiction
Day 8: Decide what pain and pleasure you want
Day 9: Analyze what leads you back to your addiction
Day 10: Change your emotions and your mindsets. Stop believing that your big score will come in.
Day 11: Where the Spirit of the Lord is – there is liberty
Day 12: Learn how to worship God. Also try to develop positive addictions.
Day 13: Write out a letter saying why you want to quit
Day 14: Overcoming cravings and negative emotions
Day 15: You have some self control
Day 16: Have a list of coping statements. Have a list of substitute activities.
Day 17: How to find living water that will always satisfy you
Day 18: Do not have faulty beliefs abourt gambling odds
Day 19: Interview with a professional poker player
Day 20: What we can learn from Adam and Eve’s mistakes
Day 21: more great stuff from Adam and Eve’s mistakes
Day 22: Self control
Day 23: What to think about to develop self control
Day 24: What are your values?
Day 25: How to pray to fight addiction
Day 26: Which prayers are answered quickly – which prayers time more time and persistence
Day 27: How to fill the vacuum that addiction caused
28: Finding a good church
29: Knowing why you can’t quit can help you plan how to quit