Thank you for visiting. We trust that you have enjoyed reading our articles.
The Great Question: Where Is God?
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control“ (Galatians 5:22-23 NIV, emphasis added).
The Bible teaches us that self-control is essential to living a Christian life. We must exercise our self-control or we become controlled by our weakness. Our weakness may be food, alcohol, drugs, pornography, etc. The enemy knows our weakness better than we do ourselves and will encourage us to go to it rather than God in times of need. Our lives can soon be dominated by our weakness and we are living completely in the flesh rather than in the Spirit. Self-control is the very essence of “dying to self” and living in righteousness with God. Our righteousness cannot — and will not ever — come from ourselves, but only as a means of grace from God as a result of totally surrendering yourself to His will and becoming His disciple.
If you are struggling with self-control, then first begin with prayer and ask God for His help. Then, go into the Bible and study and memorize some particular verses that speak to you and your particular situation.
For me, my go-to verse in times when my patience is growing thin is Proverbs 29:11. It reads in part, “A fool always loses his temper, but a wise man holds it back.” We must remember that all wisdom comes from God. So how does one obtain wisdom? James 1:5 tells us, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
The exercise of self-control will not only keep us away from our temptations but will allow us to be a powerful witness for God. You may ask, “How can I be a good witness for God by exercising self-control?” The best witness is one who demonstrates his faith with his actions. St. Francis of Assisi encouraged people to speak the gospel wherever they go and use words when necessary.
Self-control will allow you to remain silent when verbally attacked. It will allow you to respond with love when confronted with hate. Self-control will also keep you pure when you are alone. Self-control will also keep you sane in times of great adversity, such as a flooded home, divorce or loss of a family member. We freely and willingly yield control of ourselves to God and instead of worrying about what will happen, we stand steadfast in His promise of Romans 8:28. The passage reads, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Self-control does not mean that we are to go it alone. Life is tough and we need fellow Christians for the journey. We need accountability groups that are small, honest and safe so we can be vulnerable and encouraging to each other. Christ encouraged us to come to Him with our burdens and He will give us rest. Read Matthew 11 and then fasten your yoke to a friend!
Prayer: Dear God, May the Fruit of self control be a blessing to us and a witness to others of Your grace. Amen.
Meet the Author
Todd Shupe is a Men’s Ministry Specialist through the General Commission of United Methodist Men and is in training to be a Certified Lay Minister through the Louisiana Conference of the United Methodist Church. He currently serves as the President of the Baton Rouge District of United Methodist Men and is a Board Member for Gulf South Men and serves on the Action Team for The Kingdom Group. He is a volunteer for the Walk to Emmaus, Grace Camp, and Iron Sharpens Iron. Todd resides in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
We welcome your comments below.
Liked this post?
Read more below or search for more topics...
What is in Your Heart – Envy or Contentment? “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (Hebrews 12:1 NIV). Hebrews 12:1 teaches us that God has prepared a “race” for each of us. To me, this means we each have our own unique life. We don’t all have the same race, experiences, joys, and failures but we each have a unique race. God has a plan that He wants us to pursue that...
What is Truth? "Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6 NIV).In today’s society there is a constant battle over the truth. I wonder how can something so simple as the truth be so difficult to understand and agree upon. Facts are disputed, alternative facts are presented, and various groups all claim to have the truth regarding any issue: social, financial, medical, and even spiritual.You will never grow closer to Christ unless you understand the truth. Growth requires truth. We might disagree on how to best...
Reached the End of Your Rope? “Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah...