August Publisher’s LETTER
The Big 3 for Me!.
It’s my least favorite of the fruits of the spirit.
Self-control. Because my faith didn’t really start to grow until my thirties, I had a lot of bad habits that I didn’t even know were bad habits. Sure, the obvious ones were obvious. Blatant sin does not hide well, and there was plenty of that to put front and center in the “need to change” category.
Defeating those big sins became easier the more I grew, though they still creep in from time to time. It’s the more subtle habits that can truly wreak havoc on your ability to produce “fruit” in your life. The big three for me require that I heavily trust in the “Christ in Me” knowing He holds the victory in these areas of struggle in my life.
1. Words. Our words should match our faith. We can’t say we believe one way and then speak the opposite. If we say we trust God to lead us along his plan for our lives, then we can’t grumble and complain when things don’t go our way. “Lord, I’ve asked you to lead; I trust you to lead. Help me to see you in the midst of my circumstances.” Instead of giving up and giving in, use your words to affirm your faith. Your words will be a blessing or a curse not only for yourself but for others.
2. Worry. This is a daily struggle! As a parent, who does not worry about their kids? Yet we are not supposed to! We are called to “be anxious for nothing.” That includes those we love the most. When I find myself stressed out with worry, I lean into my anchor Scriptures. Psalm 91 is a chapter I recite often, out loud and repeat as necessary. Gratitude is also a wonderful weapon. “Thank you Lord for watching over my children, my family and my decisions. Thank you for your spirit of peace. Thank you for being with me today. Thank you for forgiving me of all my sin.”
3. Wit. We need to lighten up and relax! We are way too serious! When is the last time you had a great time? What did you laugh out loud about lately? Who brings calm into your life? Who speaks faith into your life? An equally good question is who steals your joy? Intentionally be around people who enjoy life and seek to do good things. Talk with them about ways to grow and “bear fruit” on a daily basis.
If we have Christ, we have self-control. We don’t have to keep trying to get better! We ask Jesus to show Himself through our circumstances and invite Him into every decision. We allow him the freedom to match our mindset with his plan for our lives. Our work is to Trust Him.
Do you want more self-control? Then surrender! Let Jesus have His way in your life! Give him your “big 3” and let Him bear fruit through you!