In the book of Galatians chapter 5, we read about the fruits of the spirit. We learn that the spiritual fruits are “love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control”. (Galatians 5:22-26)
Self control is a fruit that is also known as “self discipline” or the ability to say no. The fruits of the spirit are evidence of the Holy Spirit working in our lives. Sometimes it’s easy to lose control when circumstances our out of our control or things do not go our way. It’s not easy to say no to things that tempt us but God helps us to learn to work our spiritual muscle.
“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7)
Discipline also has the word “disciple” in it as well. We learn to follow the patterns of Christ in how he was gentle, humble, kind, and patient. He was not always able to express fully what He was doing on earth and was misunderstood and in the midst of being mocked he was able to keep silent. We too can hold our tongue and can let the Lord defend us when we cannot speak for ourselves.
“….but when the leading priests and the elders made their accusations against him, Jesus remained silent. ‘Don’t you hear all these charges they are bringing against you?’ Pilate demanded. But Jesus made no response to any of the charges, much to the governor’s surprise.” (Matthew 27: 12-14)
How do you handle stress or peer pressure? Do you succumb to temptation or anger? Do you respond in a gentle kind way? We all fall short, but we can remember when people push our buttons or trigger our weak spots to build our spiritual muscle to not provoke us and to restrain our typical responses in the flesh. We aim to walk in the spirit. I pray this article helps you and blesses you to remember to pray when you find yourself being tempted or provoked. Amen.
“So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.” (Galatians 5:16-18)
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)
PI readers, how can we specifically pray for you? Comment below!