Self-control may be the most difficult Christian characteristic that anyone of us has to ‘maintain’. Why do I say this? Think about it, “Self-Control”! How can I feel comfortable about myself when I find it so difficult to control the man/person within me! Every night when I lie down to sleep I say with some remorse, “Heavenly Father, forgive me for the many times today when I lost it!” The “it” is when my composer and self-control went out the window at the slightest provocation!
If there is any hope for me, I don’t just simply ask for forgiveness. I always ask God the Father to give me His Spirit to make it better for me to be held in His control, and not simply in mine.
I believe that our Savior Jesus spoke directly to this when he was teaching all his followers a major lesson that the Pharisees refused to understand. In Mark 7:20-23 Jesus taught his followers this lesson, a lesson of controlling what defiles and what does not. “It is what comes out of a person that defiles. For it is from within, from the human heart, that evil intentions come: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, wickedness, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride, folly. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”
It is for this reason that I believe it is so very important for me to live as Paul extols. “If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit” (25). If I live by what the Savior Christ and His life renewing lessons teach, then when I lie me down to sleep, I will find less and less to ask His forgiveness for.
Heavenly Father, I do find it very comforting to know you love me even as I am, make me even closer to you by filling me with your Spirit of love. In Christ, I humbly pray. Amen.