Some habits break hard

Jais H. Tinglund

These days I am supposed to wake up an hour later than I was a couple of weeks ago. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that I am supposed to wake up at exactly the same time, except that exactly the same time is now an hour later. It is somewhat confusing.
My mobile phone is supposed to make sure that I wake up an hour later than I usually would, or exactly at the same time, however you would have it; it automatically resets to Standard Mountain Time at the time appointed. Things do not really work that way, though; most mornings I still wake up about an hour before I am supposed to, and before the alarm goes off.
Eventually, after a few weeks, I usually find that I have made the adjustment, so that it is actually, again, the alarm that wakes me up.
We all have our habits, I suppose. And we all have to adjust to what is happening in the world around us; not to, in this case, would be silly of me. It would cause me to waste a lot of time waiting when I show up an hour early for all my appointments; it would also be childish of me, and unreasonable and unfair to demand that others accommodate me.
Come summer, I usually have less of a problem with the clocks being set forward; if the sun is going to wake me up, as it usually does, I prefer that it do so closer to the time when I am actually supposed to get up.
Some habits develop easily; and some of those are nevertheless hard to break. Over the years I have learnt that no habit forms as easily, nor is any as hard to break, as that of not going to Church. People who want to go to Church every Sunday decide not to go “today” and soon “not today” means “not any more.” No doubt there is a spiritual reason for this: the desire of sinful nature is to serve Satan, and Satan does not want sinners to be saved, and therefore he does not want sinners to go to Church. Well, not where the true God is worshipped, and His salvation; sinful nature has no problem with worship of myself and my own goodness, nor does Satan, since it is, at heart, worship of him, every bit as much as not going to Church at all is to worship Satan, and it is.
In this backward way, the ease with which the habit of not going to Church develops, and how hard it is to break, is a testimony to what is the benefit of Christian worship: that God gives His salvation to sinners, nothing less; which is much more important than at exactly what time I am supposed to wake up in the morning.
(Jais H. Tinglund is pastor of Grace Lutheran Church, Greybull/Zion Lutheran Church, Emblem.)