The secret of self-control

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23

The importance of self-control is often overlooked in our busy world.  Kids want what they want and they want it now!  Unfortunately that is true for adults too.

  • God, who is much smarter than any of us, has given the instruction to be self-controlled.  Consider Galatians 5:22-23 – Self-control is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit.   We’re told in 2 Peter 1:5-6 – Add to your faith, goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, and godliness.
  • But wait! There’s more!!  A New York Times article suggests that self-control goes hand in hand with success in education, marriage, and career.  In addition, the Journal of Pediatrics reported findings linking self-control and good health.
  • Parents can help their children develop this virtue.  Modeling self-control in purchases and relationships and helping children practice self-control is important. So is teaching your children how to express disappointment and frustration without tantrums. This is a part of displaying self-control.
  • Teaching kids self-control is a key in discipline. A child is able to make more and more good choices as they learn to monitor their own decisions – to be self-disciplined.  Helping young children become self-disciplined will help them resist many of the temptations that come with the teenage years.
  • Self-control is the precursor to the best-case scenario, God-control.  Self-control and self-discipline are trumped by God-control and God-discipline. It’s never too late and it’s never too early to begin to cultivate that virtue in a child.

When have your children exhibited self-control?

Photo: flickr

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