One professional offers five ways to break a bad habit. He says: 1) Define the bad habit and commit to change. 2) Disrupt the bad habit—force yourself to think about it. 3) Create a diary to record the habit triggers. 4) Replace the bad habit with a good one. 5) Reward yourself. In the book of Acts, we meet a group of Jewish Christians who needed to break away from a tradition they thought God approved of. Their entrenched habit was to stay away from Gentiles. So after Peter entered the home of Cornelius, his Jewish brothers pounced on him. We read in Acts chapter 11 that they said to him, “You entered the home of Gentiles and even ate with them!” Peter explained why he did it. He told them about the vision God gave him of the sheet let down from heaven with unclean animals, about the voice that said, “What God has made clean you must not call unclean.” He related how during his visit to Cornelius, the man and his family received salvation and the Holy Spirit. When these skeptical brothers took time to listen to the Apostle Peter, they concluded that God was at work. By listening to God’s servant, they were persuaded to give up their old tradition and welcome Gentiles. There may be a lesson here for some of us—some who may be stuck in a tradition that is not rooted in the Bible. Take time to listen to God’s servant.
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