Grow • Devotional #2: “Self-Control”

One of the biggest things that I struggle with in my walk with Christ is this concept of self-control. This idea is one that I am constantly having to check myself on and keep at the forefront of my mind. There are many people who are going to be able to identify with what I am about to say. I am the type of person that is either completely 100% in on something or I am 100% out. There is not usually an in-between. Sometimes we can think of this and have difficulty in realizing why this is an issue. A prime example that I can think of in my own life is food. Many people know that I love food. Food on the surface level seems like a good thing. We need it to survive. The issue comes when there is no self-control and food is consumed at an astronomical rate. Next thing we know, we are spending our entire life savings on food because we cannot control ourselves. Too much of a good thing can quickly turn into a bad thing when we are not closely evaluating ourselves.

This whole idea can become detrimental when this is something that does not just apply to actions but the people in our lives as well. I am either all in on friendships and the relationships I have with people, or I am completely out. I find myself entirely focused on the relationships I have with people until I find myself getting hurt by them. It is at this point that I push them away and dissolve the relationship altogether. Many of us do this because we let our emotions be the determining factor in our lives. In 1 Thessalonians 4:4-5, Paul discusses this idea of self-control,

“That each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God.”

Whenever I read the Bible and realize it tells us how to act, it is always a huge kick in the teeth when I find myself identifying with the side that God relates to those who do not know Him. We are called to control ourselves with holiness and honor in the forefront of our minds and not out of emotional impulses. If we find ourselves continuously cutting people out of our lives because of an issue of self-control, then we are acting like someone who does not know God. If we are consuming the things of this world without control, we are acting like someone who does not know God. We need to pray to God for the strength to control ourselves and work daily at making sure we are not acting out of impulse.

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