Habit formation = point-to-point hike

By Dave Henning / March 17, 2022

“Habit formation is a point-to-point hike.  You cannot allow yourself shortcuts or detours.  You cannot do an end run around tough times or tough conversations.  Eating the frog is having the courage to go through them and coming out on the other side with a testimony.  How else are you going to cultivate mental toughness?”- Mark Batterson

“I have worked much harder.”- 2 Corinthians 11:23 (NIV)

Mark Batterson prefaces Day 15 (“Do It Difficult”) of Do It for a Day with Habit 3 – Eat the Frog.  First, though, Pastor Batterson reminds us of the growth mindset from day 2 – harder is better!  To that mindset, eating the frog adds a time stamp – harder sooner!  Above all, Mark stresses, that means more than ‘getting it out of the way’ or ‘checking it off the list.’  Rather, eating the frog denotes an approach to life that embraces challenge.  Resistance as a form of resistance training.

Teddy Roosevelt approached life, Mark notes, with a no-nonsense, nor-excuses pragmatism.  And something Roosevelt called a point-to-point hike stands as the epitome of Roosevelt’s approach to life.  Once you select a particular destination, you cannot alter your course.  No matter what, you must hike in a straight line.  So, if you come to a wall, for example, you climb over it.

Hence, Pastor Batterson counsels:

“What makes us think we can become like Jesus without being betrayed by Judas, denied by Peter, scoffed at by Pharisees, mocked by Roman soldiers, or tempted by the Enemy himself?  That’s how we grow, spiritually speaking.  It’s time to eat the frog!”

In conclusion, Mark observes, Teddy Roosevelt advocated the strenuous life.  Or, as Pastor Batterson phrases it, the growth mindset.  The essence of eating the frog.  Thus, when you see an elevator and some stairs, opt for the stairs.  Consequently, the author exhorts, take the path of most resistance.  Because it’s the road less traveled.

Today’s question: What Bible verses help you commit to habit formation as a point-to-point hike?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Hands down, the hardest person to lead”

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Dave Henning

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