July 1, 2018
We are pursuing self-control in our lives through the power of God that enables and empowers us to control our thoughts, attitudes, and actions. Last week we learned two things that help us with self-control and we will continue this week with two more.
1 Accept responsibility for your lack of self-control. (pt 1)
2 Put your past behind you. (pt 1)
3 Start Believing You Can Change
Your beliefs control your behavior. The way you think about things determines the way you feel. And when your feelings become strong enough, they determine the way you act. The person who says, I can’t do it and the person who says, I can do it probably are both right. Much of the time you set yourself up to be defeated or to be victorious by what you are saying. Your words reinforce wither your right or wrong belief system. Peter said, “Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled, set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Christ Jesus is revealed.” (1 Peter 1:13) A clear mind is essential to self-control. God gave us the power to change our habits when He gave us the power to choose our thoughts. Romans 12:2, does not say we are transformed by just hard work and willpower but by the renewing of our minds. When your self-control is being tested, you need to fill your mind with the promises of God. Paul says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13) That means you can change, and you can be different. Stop setting yourself up for failure by constantly criticizing yourself. Don not accept the thoughts that you are no good and that you have no control. With God all things are possible and everything is possible for him who believes. (Mark 9:23)
Do you believe all things are possible? Start believing in yourself.
What has God done for you that has strengthened your faith?
4 Make Yourself Accountable
Alcoholics Anonymous has a buddy system in which you are encouraged to call someone whenever you feel the pressure building to return to the old ways. The Word says, “Carry (share) each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2) Find someone who will check up on you, pray with you, and encourage you in areas where you need more self-control. The Word says, “Two heads are better than one.” Ecclesiastes 4:12) “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.” Every church needs to develop a buddy system in relationships where people can be accountable to each other. We need to encourage each other in the Lord. Look for someone you like and enjoy and someone you can depend on to follow through and be faithful. Allow you friend to check up on you on a regular basis. Knowing that someone will be asking you about your problems will give you additional incentive to not give in to temptation. This may be the extra push you need to help you on the road to victory and self-control.
Who could be your accountability partner?
Why not pray and ask for help in your life?