What is the secret of self-control?
Think about the difficulty, suffering, and damage you would have avoided if you only had more self-control. Think about how fit you would be or how much further you would have gone in your career if you had just had the self-control to work out more regularly, eat better, study more, and work harder. Or think about how much greater your spiritual life and health might be if you had exercised more self-control.
Self-control seems to be the secret to success and happiness, doesn’t it! If only we had more, how much better things would be. However, despite several thousand years of human history and development, we don’t seem to have progressed much with regard to self-control. It continually feels like we are our own worst enemies.
This week, we come to the last of the Fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23: Self-Control. In the Galatian time and world of Greek Philosophy, self-control was an especially valued virtue (like I said, it has been for thousands and thousands of years!). As human beings, we have always talked about, struggled with, and longed for more of it.
Self-control is vitally important. God commands us to exercise self-control, to grow in self-control, and to repent for when we act impulsively, rashly, or let our emotions take over. But successfully growing in self-control is a gift of the Spirit. Self-control is a Fruit of the Spirit! So, we have to wonder, what does the Holy Spirit have to do with my struggles and battles with self-control? How is Christian self-control similar or different to other strategies and approaches?
This Sunday and next week in our Daily Worship Devotions we will delve into Colossians 2:18-3:17 as we both consider how we are doing with self-control and look to God to gift it and grow it in us and our church family.
I look forward to worshiping with you.
Yours in Christ,