Habits Start with a Choice
By Drenda Keesee
We are used to following the ways of the world. When I dedicated my heart to God, I had more than 18 years of bad habits under my belt that I learned from the world’s system. My mind was renewed to the culture, and I still retained those worldly thoughts when I got saved.
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. (Ephesians 2:1-3a)
As a young woman, I was determined to never…
…get married or have children. I decided I would be a career woman. I thought my success defined me as a person, and so I was always striving and never satisfied. Those were wrong thoughts that I renewed my mind to and God had to work those out of me. It wasn’t an easy, overnight process. It was a gradual change I underwent. I had to remind myself to rely on God instead of trying to do everything in my own strength.
God dealt with my heart about the great call it is to be a mother. It was a step to have children, but when I decided to be a stay-at-home mom (what I used to be so against!), I had to renew my mind to God’s Word all over again. I had to renew my mind continually to God’s Word and clean out those incorrect thoughts!
In Mark 7:13 it says, “Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.”
If we look to traditions or the world’s system, we are going to nullify the power of the Word of God. It doesn’t matter if you can quote a promise if you don’t believe that promise, or if you restrain that promise with your excuses.
I can’t choose God’s system and the world’s system. Every time I do that, I am taking my eyes off of God and I am putting them on the problem. I am not going to receive the promise if I do that!
“Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do” (James 1:8, NLT).
The Bible says a double-minded man or woman cannot receive anything from God because they are not in faith. You have to decide if you are going to be problem-focused or promise-focused. Satan wants to tie your hands with problems. He aims to get you in reaction mode so you will not recognize who you are in Christ or the knowledge of your authority over problems.
Now, when I talk about taking authority over problems, I don’t mean winning the argument against your husband or anything like that. I mean dealing with the root of the issue: your thoughts. Proverb 23:7 (AMP) says, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. As one who reckons, he says to you, eat and drink, yet his heart is not with you [but is grudging the cost].” Satan wants you to rehearse curses in your life. He wants you to renew your mind to your problems and not the promises of God.
Our sinful nature is another thing that tries to control our lives. It is something that feels good to us and has grown familiar. We’ve renewed our minds to those bad habits in the world’s system, and whenever we renew our minds more with the world’s system than with God’s system, we revert to those habits. You don’t want that anymore! You need to stay away from those things that you’ve broken off of your life by the power of God. We are transformed by what we look to or look at. Make sure you are looking at what God says.
Listen in Now to Faith Life Church!
Drenda Keesee’s contagious zeal and humorous personal experiences help make her ministry of spiritual, emotional and relational wholeness one that will bless your life and spark a new fire in your spirit.
A wife of over 30 years and a mother of five children, Drenda has ministered at churches, seminars, and conferences, and through the mediums of television and radio, for more than 20 years.
Her books, The New Vintage Family, Better Than You Think, and She Gets It are available wherever books are sold. In these heartfelt books, Drenda shares her personal journey and the life lessons that have brought her to where she is today, as well as practical answers that all people need to live a joyful life.
Drenda and her husband Gary founded Faith Life Now, a ministry designed to spread the message of freedom in the areas of finances, faith, marriage, and family. Tune in for their weekly messages here. Faith Life Now hosts conferences worldwide, and sponsors both Fixing the Money Thing, which Drenda co-hosts with her husband Gary, and Drenda.
Through their own life experiences, the Keesees have found the principles from God’s Word to be powerful and effective. At one point, Drenda was a young, suicidal feminist with no hope of ever being “good enough” for her own standards of perfection. She never wanted the “inconvenience” of a husband or children, and she was on her own path to success. But the stress of trying to achieve perfection and perform for love left her broken and used. She had success, but it was nothing compared to the pain and loneliness it had also brought.
That’s when God got a hold of her heart. It was there—at her lowest point—that she found the One who accepted and loved her, faults and all. Since that transformation, Drenda has had a passion to reach women who find themselves where she once was.
She married Gary after attending college, and there she found herself in a personal boot camp of sorts. She says, “I cried and told God, ‘I can do anything but be a wife and mother.’” She committed to learning how to do it God’s way. Through the many years of raising their children and struggling to make ends meet, Drenda learned from their mistakes. “I didn’t know how to be a wife and mother, but God saved our marriage, taught us how to parent our children for success, showed us how to have financial success, and then irony of all ironies, He called us to ministry.” It’s truly because of these life experiences that Drenda can now share so many insightful principles for people who are now going through the same struggles.