Friday, September 30, 2011


being without my trusty, faithful and tiny computer has thrown this blogger for a loop.   I actually write down ideas for blog posts and then can't seem to set myself down to this machine to post.  Lazy,  creature of habit,  ornery...not sure what word best fits...probably ALL.

So here is one post I wrote down.  HABITS.  As you know,  I have spent the last few weeks year reading The Discipline of Grace by Jerry Bridges.  Wonderful book.  This past week I was reading about the life lived in the character of Christ.  Quoting from the book..

"In  other words,  the practice of putting off sinful attitudes and actions and putting on Christlike character involves a constant series of choices.  We choose in every situation which direction we will go.  It is through these choices that we develop Chistlike habits of living.  Habits are developed by repetition, and it is in the arena of moral choices that we develop spiritual habit of patterns. "

I loved this.  I am really a creature of habit...get up by 6 a.m.,  get myfake coffee going,  pick up a little until it is ready,  read Bible, drink said coffee,  etc.   I could spend my whole doing the same things..for the most part.  It make me feel calm to have smoothness.  But....I have  a husband and 4 delightful children, one of whom loves to wake up a little earlier than the others and have her fake coffee hot cocoa and read her Bible.   Precious.   But habits make sense to me.  The DEVELOPING of habits is another story...another post...another life.   But at least I understand and can strive for this.

Another reason I loved this is because of how well it paradies with Charlotte Mason's writings of habits.  Here are her own words.

" 'Habit is ten natures.' If that be true, strong as nature is, habit is not only as strong, but tenfold as strong. Here, then, have we a stronger than he, able to overcome this strong man armed."

" 'Begin it, and the thing will be completed!' is infallibly true of every mental and moral habitude: completed, not on the lines you foresee and intend, but on the lines appropriate and necessary to that particular habitude. "

"We think, as we are accustomed to think; ideas come and go and carry on a ceaseless traffic in the rut––let us call it––you have made for them in the very nerve substance of the brain. You do not deliberately intend to think these thoughts; you may, indeed, object strongly to the line they are taking (two 'trains' of thought going on at one and the same time!), and objecting, you may be able to barricade the way, to put up 'No Road' in big letters, and to compel the busy populace of the brain-world to take another route. But who is able
vol 1 pg 109

for these things? Not the child, immature of will, feeble in moral power, unused to the weapons of the spiritual warfare. He depends upon his parents; it rests with them to initiate the thoughts he shall think, the desires he shall cherish, the feelings he shall allow. Only to initiate; no more is permitted to them; but from this initiation will result the habits of thought and feeling which govern the man––his character, that is to say. But is not this assuming too much, seeing that, to sum up roughly all we understand by heredity, a child is born with his future in his hands? The child is born, doubtless, with the tendencies which should shape his future; but every tendency has its branch roads, its good or evil outcome; and to put the child on the right track for the fulfilment of the possibilities inherent in him, is the vocation of the parent."

"This relation of habit to human life––as the rails on which it runs to a locomotive––is perhaps the most suggestive and helpful to the educator; for just as it is on the whole easier for the locomotive to pursue its way on the rails than to take a disastrous run off them, so it is easier for the child to follow lines of habit carefully laid down than to run off these lines at his peril. It follows that this business of laying down lines towards the unexplored country of the child's future is a very serious and responsible one for the parent. It rests with him to consider well the tracks over which the child should travel with profit and pleasure; and, along these tracks, to lay down lines so invitingly smooth and easy that the little traveller is going upon them at full speed without stopping to consider whether or no he chooses to go that way."

There is so much more she wrote oh habits and other things.  She it very talkative on this subject for good reason.  Ms. Mason saw how habits helped a child in all of life,  spiritually,  physically, mentally.  Spiritually by having the habit of going to Christ for all things,  prayer and the reading of scripture,  and all this to empower them to live godly lives, which influence every part of their being.  Physically she observed herself the great advantages that those who practiced good habits of hygiene, exercise, and healthy eating had.  They had much better  overall health which also relates to mental health.  And mentally aquiring those habits would serve to make studying less exhausting and to prepare the mind for receiving all the goodness and rejecting the wrong. 

If you have never read Ms. Mason's series on Home Education,  I strongly recommend you give her a try.  Here is a link to her books online and here they are in modern language.  All these quotes came from book one titled Home Education .   

So I am back with a VERY LONG post,  no pics,  and links to only books.  What do you expect from a book lover? 

thanks for reading,


1 comment:

  1. Good words from Ms. Mason. Thanks for the thoughts on habits, Rebekah. It is interesting, isn't it, that bad habits are easy to acquire and good habits are easy to break, so it is so important that we remain faithful in prayer and reading of God's Word as we seek to maintain those good ones. Love you.


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