Love God. Love people.

Love God. Love people.

Monday, November 30, 2015

A Little More Like Uno

Oh Uno.... He is our almost-8-year old boxer.  His teeth are yellow, breath a bit fishy, and he has gone gray in the face.  I wish I was a little more like him, another way.

He has mastered the art of self-control.  Not many humans have.  We have all got our vices, but very few have conquered them entirely.   When speaking of self discipline there are so many things it could involve. Spending, lust, vanity, technology, words, temper, food, you name may just have you in its chains.

Whew, lately, I have been abusing the whole tasty world of gluten.... Making a glutton of myself with gluten, if you will.  I am supposed to steer clear of it for some autoimmune reasons.  But, once I have had just a tad, then feel fine, it is like I MUST gorge myself until my body aches and feels horrible.  This has been going on for about 3 weeks now. There is an addictive cycle to my lack of self control and plenty of reasoning to go along.  "But ahhh- it's the holidays- I should give myself a break.... Or sometimes, I just have to eat what is convenient.... Or you are stressed- enjoy a second piece of cheesecake!"

Back to Uno... He can have a Milk bone on the carpet for a few hours before he decides he is ready for it.  Or perhaps his bowl is filled with a fresh cup of food-- he won't touch it, until he is ready.  I admire that, because if I am being honest, all it takes is to drive past a Dairy Queen, and my brakes are squealing to get myself turned in just enough time for the drive-thru.  Or Jeesh- if ANY form of chocolate is in our kitchen, it won't be as soon as I know of its existence.

God does take this reckless lack of management seriously however.  One who is following Christ, and growing in Him should have the following qualities,"love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control." (Gal. 5:22-23) Just wondering if self-control is last because it is most difficult to attain??  It runs the gamut of so many areas in our lives- far beyond chocolate and gluten.

Other verses to think about as you ponder your own self control (or lack thereof):

2 Timothy 1:7 “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline."

2 Peter 1:5-8 “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge, and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

That last one is powerful.  If we seek to have any lasting change, we have to increase our knowledge of His word and depth of of our relationship with Him.  You want to be productive? Be your best self? Set an example? Please God?

Lay down the excuses, the secretiveness of your struggle, and pray for yourself.  Yes- pray for you.  God is the only One who has the power to change you.  You are the only one to change your own habits with HIS help.

Ps- isn't it incredible that we have natural consequences for things we do not have under control?  For instance- my waistline will not get any smaller if I continue eating like T-Rex.  You checkbook will bounce once you have spend it all and more.  Your own mind and body can and will suffer if lust gets the best of you.  I would say God programmed us that way...or else we would never learn.

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