Self-control is one of those words that I use a lot with my kids. With 2 teenage sons and a tween daghter, we have lots of hormones flying around our house. And hormones usually lead to a huge lapse in self-control. So we are learning together ( because momma has her own hormones too) what self-control involves and why it's important to our lives as Christians.
We've read about it being one of the Fruits of the Spirit in Galatians. Our youth pastor recently completed a series on that subject and last spring I joined other ladies at our church for a Beth Moore study on it. But even though we know how we are suppose to act, it's still difficult in that moment to choose to self-control over the alternative action. The action that we really really want to do because we're just not gonna take it anymore. The concept of self-control is hard. Which is why I think it's last in the list of Fruits of the Spirit.
"The quality of self-control is that which secures our freedom to love, to experience joy, to know peace, to respond with patience, to have a kind disposition, to act out of goodness, to step out in faithfulness, and to agree with gentleness. How? Because self-control is the ability to make choices which invite and enhance the authority and filling of the Holy Spirit. Self-control is the decision to remain within the boundaries of victory!" (Beth Moore ~ Living Beyond Yourself)
When we have any area of our lives that is out of control, its an invitation to the enemy to enter and cause chaos. It's an opportunity for him to use our weakness to cause us to lash out at a family member or give in to a temptation. We choose to love self more than God. Brooke McGlothlin wrote the following: "Every time I love Him less I love something else more. But He loves me. He loves me always. In the moment of choice this knowing of His steadfast, never-ending love is what gives me strength. This knowing of His great sacrifice for me…and for you. This knowing of the lengths He would go to love me more…The choice to love Him more begins from the beginning…hearts made to worship Him…choose Him. Hearts that left to themselves will choose their own way every time."
Everyday we have to start the day by deciding who's in charge today. Is it His will or my will today? The only way we live a victorious day is to surrender to the Spirit. If we don't make that choice, then we are setting ourselves up to fail. Our sin nature will prevail and we will surrender to the flesh. Whenever we choose to surrender and yield to the Spirit we will posess abilities that are completely beyond us. The ability to be submissive to His will, restrained and under control.
Teaching our children how to live a life of self-control is authentic and effective when they see it lived out in the daily life of mom. So each day consciously choose to surrender and decide to just love Him more.
I am a Christian, a wife, a mom, a VBS crafter, a coupon clipper, a thrift store shopper, a football fan, a cook, a student of the Bible and an avid reader.