“Break the Cycle”

Most people normally conduct their life with a predictable series of habits, customs, rituals and repetitious behavior called cycles.  Much of this behavior is adopted, almost subconsciously, at an early age through the training dictated and modeled by their parents and teachers.  As one grows, convenience and necessity play a role in one’s development of a life-style.  This pattern usually allows for an orderly existence rather than one of chaos.

For the most part, cycles are positive and allow one to interact with the rest of society in a stress-free environment.  It is useful, and at times even critical, to establish routines in driving, working, parenting, relaxation and many other activities.  However, if one becomes so obsessive that any change in this rote procedure produces conflict and anger, one needs to break the cycle.

When a person grows up in an abusive home where one or both parents mentally or physically mistreat their children, the children are not doomed to repeat this cycle.  Some variations of this cycle may have been passed down for generations.  Adults have the freedom of choice to break this cycle.

Christians are certainly not immune from cycles, but we are also creatures of habit and can tend to let our worship become so repetitive and cold that it no longer has the zeal that Jesus wants. (Rev 3:15-16) If this is so, we run the risk of, “honoring God with our lips, but having our heart far from Him.” (Mk 7:6)  We are not compelled to repeat cycles either.  We must be constant in doctrine but not in methods.  If variety is truly the spice of life, we can break the cycle of cold and vain repetition.  Surely we can do all things decently and in order (1 Cor 14:40) and yet be joyful. (Rm 14:17) (Rom 15:13)                                                                            

  –Jim Bailey