Mid Week Meditation

Mid Week Meditation pt. 26

Submitted on: September 14, 2017

Based on Bible text: Galatians 5:22-25 (KJV)    

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.”

The last Fruit of the Spirit listed is Temperance or Self Control. I call that the fruit no one likes to eat. What does it mean to control yourself?

Self control means “to be sober, not counterfeit”. Young folk refer to it as being “real.” It means we don’t act one way with our friends, and another way with our church family. It means we don’t talk nice to a person and then as soon as they turn their back we are badmouthing them. A song writer penned, “Smiling faces sometimes pretend to be your friend. Smiling faces show no traces of the evil that lurks within.”

There should be a point at which every mature Christian learns to submit to the authority of God and become “real” for Christ. The Word of God says. “Submit yourselves” to God. We serve a God of order, who expects us to live predictable lives of obedience. We’ve got to be “real” for Christ.

God is well aware of the “flip-flopper.” “Flip-floppers” make a mess of things. They stir up contentions, feed fights, and rattle our religion. I wonder sometimes if they realize that they’re unpredictability renders them useless for the real work of kingdom building. God cannot use a chameleon. You know what a chameleon does. He adapts himself to his surroundings. He hides behind a phony exterior that makes him look like he fits in. But he’s a counterfeit.

Likewise, God can’t use counterfeit Christians. They may look good on the outside, with the cross hanging from their necks, and the big bible under their arm. They may even sound good with all their “Praise the Lord” and “Be blessed” expressions. But God knows what’s going on inside, and He knows they’re useless because they refuse to allow Him to control them.

The Word of God reminds us that self-control is really God control. It is the art of bringing our whole body into subjection and under the control of the Holy Spirit. It is a constant outward demonstration of God’s inner spiritual control. It is God’s mastery of us, mastery of our tongue; mastery of our hands and feet; and mastery of our mind.

Self control means to avoid impulsive behavior. What is impulsive behavior? It is anything we say or do without godly forethought. It is like when we speak our mind in private, as though God can’t hear us. A seasoned Christian allows God to take control of their thought process. They know how to bite their tongue, hold their peace, and speak with reservation and scriptural aforethought.

But there is more to it than just letting God control our emotions. The tongue is not the only weapon Satan uses to tear down God’s kingdom. Ungodly impulsive behavior feeds on vanity and self-indulgence too. Self-indulgence is like buying that new pair of shoes on Friday when we know it means we won’t be able to tithe on Sunday; or spending our whole tax refund on an expensive car, without any thought to give a portion of our blessing to God.

The reality is that God expects us to listen to Him first, before we make decisions. It doesn’t mean we have to drop to our knees every time we get ready to do or say something. If we are a Christian, there should be instilled in us that “still, small voice” called the Holy Spirit that guides our every step. We should automatically hear God’s instructions. “Don’t say those hurtful things! You know better!”

Morality becomes instinctive to those who are bought and paid for by the Blood of Christ. It shouldn’t take much thought to talk encouragingly, to be good and walk the straight and narrow path

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