28 May 2013 by Mindy Oon CM –
All of us have dreams. We want to better ourselves and achieve more. For some of us we want to be in better physical shape. Others want to be more successful in their business and have greater financial stability. Each of us have goals and for each goal there is one thing in common – it cannot be achieved without discipline and self-control.
Most ladies (I’m not too sure about men!) have gone through a time in their lives when they had this thought – “I’ll only eat one cookie/one piece of chocolate” – but end up eating the whole bag of cookies or the whole bar of chocolate. Why? Not because the cookie was super yummy, but because we lack self-control. Many of us think we cannot change. But the truth is, we CAN. With God’s grace, we can start making right choices and developing new habits that will allow us to achieve our goals.
Power to Change Comes from God
Living a disciplined live requires more than will power. How many of us have planned out diets only to break them and then feel depressed that we broke the diet? Or how many of us made up our minds to stop smoking but try as we might, still reach for the cigarette?
John 15:5 says “… apart from me you can do nothing”. We cannot do anything successfully unless we lean on Him. Breakthroughs come when we learn to lean on Him, through reading God’s word and talking to Him in prayer; and allowing us to change from the inside.
Sometimes, as humans, we want to have all the good results without having to discipline ourselves or take any responsibility to get them. We want to have what we want without having to ‘work’ for it. While we can have microwave meals these days, there’s no such thing as microwave Christianity. Christian growth is a process. It is only when we learn and make the right choices, that we can go where we want to be.
Wanting to achieve something (eg. That elusive target weight) will remain as a dream if we do not discipline ourselves. It will be difficult in the beginning, but as we make the right choice, we will get one step closer to our goal.
But Why ‘Suffer’ by Disciplining Ourselves?
Wise people think about the consequences and care more about the later on than right now. One of the things I learnt from my mom was to ask the question “Would this matter in five years?” If the answer was yes, then I had better make the decision carefully. But what is the point of living a disciplined life when in the end each of us will pass by this earth; and still go to heaven? The point is this – a disciplined life give glory to God. It is one of the keys to good health, peace, prosperity, great relationship, and to fulfilling our purpose here on earth. Self-control is one of the fruits of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law”)
You have what it takes to live a disciplined life. By drawing on God’s grace and power, we can live a life that proclaims the goodness and greatness of our God.
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