“He went to the synagogue, as was His custom”…
One day, when I was seventeen, my sister asked me to baby-sit her infant son one evening, while they went out for awhile. I loved the little boy dearly.
The baby was suffering from a slight cold; my sister’s instructions were to give him a spoon full of cough medicine from a bottle which she had left on the counter in the kitchen. When the time came to administer the cough syrup, I picked up the bottle, poured the medicine into a spoon and offered it to the baby. As was my habit, I didn’t bother to turn on the light in the kitchen.
The child immediately began to cough and cry, as he choked and spit out most of the medicine on his pajamas. This was not really an unusual response to bad tasting medicine, or so I thought. I turned on the light in the kitchen to assess the situation. There was another small bottle on the counter. Upon checking, I saw that it contained the cough medicine.
The liquid I had poured into the spoon, was Tincture of Benzoin Compound, a substance used in vaporizers to help in easing breathing problems. Two bottles sat on the counter; without the light to show the names on the labels, I had chosen the wrong one. ‘
I was devastated. This child who I dearly loved had nearly been poisoned by my irresponsible action. The little boy was fine. He suffered no ill effects from my carelessness, since most of the liquid had fallen on his pajamas.***
Because of that experience, I have adopted a discipline which has served me throughout my life. Never administer or take a medication without first carefully checking the directions; in the light. This has become my custom and it has served me, and others, well.
I was reading an explanation of a “parable”, recently. The reference said Jesus often used parables for his listeners to quickly understand the point he was making. What one idea would come into a person’s mind when they heard the story he told them? It went on to say, the best thing to do to help a person, is to get them to think for themselves.
This incident of mine with the little child, came quickly into my mind as I’ve shared above. Is a “habit” the same as a “custom”?
When the habit of attending church becomes a custom to us, we are ready to live; to worship and praise, to love and be loved, to listen and share His word within the congregation of Christ on Sunday morning.
We are no longer burdened with a weekly decision; should I go or should I stay home? (Oh well, that’s what I always do on Sunday.) It’s no longer a habit…it is now our custom.
We belong to a study group with other Christians as has now become our custom. Whether we join together on Sunday morning or another time during the week, we place ourselves in a position to grow and incorporate the meaning of His Word into our lives. It has become, our custom to listen, to learn, and to share.
Jesus, once again, has given us the example of His own life. “He went to the synagogue, as was His custom
Are your habits serving you well? Would you like to turn them into customs? Your answer may be a life saver.
(Lord; ” Teach us Your ways. Help us to develop customs that will allow us to be used by You in Your ministries.” Amen)
***Note-The “child” is now in his seventies; in good health.