And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. (Rom 5:3-6)

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. (Psalm 69:6)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Ten Exercises to Build Self Control for the Christian

Self control is both a biblical mandate and a pathway to freedom.  Just look at the following verses.

Pro 25:28  A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.

1Co 9:25  Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.

Gal 5:22-25 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.

1Ti 2:9-10  likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, but with what is proper for women who profess godliness--with good works. 

2Ti 1:7  for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. 

Thus we can see that self-control is often a hallmark of Christianity.  We no longer are to give in to the easy desires of the flesh, but now seek to have a heart walled in by values that look to the glory of Christ.

No one is born with self control, it has to be exercised and instilled by the Holy Spirit.  However, there are ten disciplines that come to mind, that when practiced, will have us either failing or abiding in Christ for the abilities to grow in self-control.

  1. Have a regular disciplined early morning Bible study that is completed before any other task.
  2. Limit your daily internet use.
  3. Eat smaller portions.
  4. Exercise regularly, aiming for consistency.
  5. Refrain from talking excessively or from dominating conversations; listen.
  6. Diligently work with excellence.
  7. Manage your time in such a way that you have time to give in the helping of others.
  8. Spend less than you earn.
  9. Refrain from critical speech or the use of harsh words.
  10. Memorize scripture.