Self-Control

I always like to think I am a self-controlled person. I don’t let my emotions get too out of control. I’m disciplined about taking care of myself. I don’t let my thoughts go crazy. However, there are certain things that show me how little I know about self-control:

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Enter Grandma’s Mudballs. As a child, my grandma Bertha only made these once a year, at Christmas. They really just are peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate, but oh my are they good. My cousins and I would fight over the tin, and since I was the youngest for a while, and they were both boys and stronger, I lost a lot. Because of this, I think I have a sense of “I must eat them all!” whenever they are around, even though I’m the one that probably made them!

Dictionary.com defines self-control as, “control or restraint of oneself or one’s actions,feelings, etc.” I think I’m in control of myself, but I’m not. Part of that is a good thing; we aren’t in control. God is in control of us. However, when we aren’t self-controlled, it’s not that we need to buckle up our boot straps, and get controlled. What self-controlled I think really means is surrender. We are surrendered to God, and to the Holy Spirit, thus we are more aware of the Holy Spirit pricking us, and saying things like, “hold your tongue here; you don’t need to say anything”, or “You don’t need to eat another mudball; take care of your body.”

Titus encourages the leaders of the church in Titus 2:11-14, “11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.”

Today, I would encourage you to:

  • Remember the grace you have been given
  • Call on the Holy Spirit to prick your heart in areas where you might be trying to control things rather than surrendering the situation
  • Praise God that He is in control of whatever situation or person you feel stressed about today.

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