Fruits of the Spirit: Who Am I Becoming
Rev. Jim Toole
1 Corinthians 9:24-27
PEACE AND SELF-CONTROL
Shalom is defined as a totality of safety, satisfaction, blessing, completeness and wholeness. Peace and self-control are definitely interrelated. If we are living lives out of control there is a very good probability we are not experiencing much peace.
So how do we define Self-Control?
The Greek word used for self-control in The New Testament is often “egkrateia,” which means having command or “mastery over” or possession of “one's own behavior.”
So how do we develop Self-Control?
I have mentioned that the Fruits of the Spirit are attributes that develop as “both/and.” Self-control is a character trait that indeed we have to practice and make a conscious choice, but self-control is also a byproduct that is developed in us by the Grace of God. It is both/and.
So, how do we nurture Self-Control?
The beginning of Godly self-control is an honest self-appraisal.
We need to practice the art of turning towards God.
We need to continually turn to caring and wise Christians.
One of my favorite images used to promote self-control is the idea of having guardrails in our lives. Now, everybody knows what a guardrail is, but you probably don’t know the official definition of a guardrail. A guardrail is actually a system designed to keep vehicles from straying into dangerous or off-limit areas. Self-Control is a God given guardrail to keep us from entering into hazardous areas in our lives.
Questions for Reflection:
How developed are your limits?
Do you have guardrails in your life?
Do you actually have a God given internal moral system designed to keep you from entering into hazards in your life?