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Self-Control

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“For the Lord disciplines the one he loves and punishes every son he receives” (Romans 12:6, Christian Standard Bible). It was a bright, sunny Saturday morning, and a friend and I were on vacation at a beautiful spot near the shore. What better way to start our morning than to peacefully enjoy a delicious breakfast buffet. As the hostess walked us to our table, my eyes moved across the artistic display of fruits, pastries, and other breakfast dishes. How lovely. The first two minutes were nice. But then . . . I noticed a child pick up a pastry with…

“A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls” (Proverbs 25:28, English Standard Version). Have you ever said to yourself, “Self, I am so proud of you. You are so disciplined and have everything under control!” Me either. Most of us struggle with this self-control (temperance) thing. We have good intentions, but then we fail on the follow-through. Again and again. We need more than good intentions; we need self-control. How do we develop self-control? Is it even possible to become more disciplined in life? The Bible assures us we can. Galatians 5:22-23 lists temperance,…

“And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; II Peter 1:6 The third step in our journey towards becoming more like Jesus is temperance. Just what does that word mean to us? In the 19th and early 20th centuries, one of the larges and most influential women’s groups in our country was a movement called the Women’s Christian Temperance Union. It was a social and political campaign advocating moderation or total abstinence from alcohol, prompted by the belief that drink was responsible for many of society’s ills. I wonder how many of these women would feel…