self-control

Self-Control

Finding Self-Control and Starting Over

We learn from our mistakes in the areas that matter least; like games, texting, computers. We repeat mistakes in areas that matter most; finances, relationships, kids, school.

Why add more pain to an already painful existence? In this life there will always be pain. Do not procrastinate to avoid pain. You can either choose a little pain now, or a LOT more pain later. 

There are THREE MYTHS in regards to having self-control and making better decisions in life:

THE EXPERIENCE MYTH — “Experience makes you wiser.” 

THE KNOW BETTER MYTH — “Since I know better, I’ll do better.”

THE TIME IS AGAINST ME MYTH — “Compared to THAT person, I’m way behind!”

The Experience Myth Experience only makes us older, tired, poorer, lonelier, etc. It does NOT make you wiser. Only EVALUATED EXPERIENCE makes you wiser. If you can sit down at the end of each day and evaluate what you did and how well it worked for your goals, you’ll be SOOO much wiser than you were before that day began.

The Know Better Myth I saw Suzie do that thing and it turned out bad for her, so I KNOW that I won’t make the same mistake. WRONG. Knowing better does not equal doing better.

The Time is Against Me Myth — Stop comparing yourself to others when making decisions about your life. TIME IS YOUR FRIEND. The clock is NOT ticking. You need to have time to gain emotional balance before trying something again. When you are in pain physically or emotionally, you become very self-absorbed.

<<SELF-ABSORBED PEOPLE MAKE SELF-ABSORBED DECISIONS>>

When you are (emotionally) healthy you have clarity that will help you make good decisions.

SCRIPTURE REFERENCES:

Romans 8:28 — And we know in ALL things God works for the good of those who love Him, and have been called according to His purpose.

In every instance in the bible there were YEARS between the 1st and 2nd rounds of experiences. They gained a divine sense of destiny and an abiding sense of humility. “I wouldn’t trade anything for what I learned in the first round.”

LIFE LESSON:

If you allow God to use ALL experiences in your life, the experiences will resurface in a POSITIVE way.

 

 

hands folded in prayer

Prayer

Have you ever wondered…

…Is this working? Is anyone out there? Am I doing this right? Is prayer just talking to God?

If God already knows what I need, then WHY ASK?

The purpose in prayer is to surrender to His will more than your own. Before we get to what you want, we must first surrender to Him. You should be more committed to His will than your own because he sees the world and your life more clearly than you will ever be able to see it. Thank God we don’t always get everything we ask for b/c we don’t know what else God is working on.

God’s will be done – because it’s bigger than just you.

Every single time you pray you need to remember that you are a forgiven person and you should forgive the people around you. And you are not intending to do evil. It’s not about getting forgiveness and emptying your sin bucket so you can go out and fill it up again.

HOW TO PRAY:

  • Declare God’s greatness.
  • Surrender your will.
  • Acknowledge your dependence.

– PROVISION (remembering that everything comes from God)

– PARDON (thank you for sending Jesus to die for my sins)

– PROTECTION (from temptation and evil)

Don’t start off asking for what YOU want.

To the best of your ability, try to keep the following things in mind during prayer:

  • Be alone
  • No one else sees you
  • Isolation from the world around you
  • To your unseen father
  • Don’t think you are going to move God in your direction
  • You don’t need to beg or plead
  • He knows what you need before you ask him

SCRIPTURE REFERENCES:

Luke 11:1  — Lord, teach us to pray.

Matthew 6:5-10 — And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your father who is unseen. Then your father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you (with peace). And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

Matthew 6:12-13  This then, is how you should pray: (MEANING: here is a new model and direction and way to move when you pray) Our Father in heaven, hallowed (majestic, separate, holy, big) be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory for ever and ever. Amen.

LIFE LESSON: Why Pray? The reward is PEACE.

Just try it. The next time someone makes you red in the face with anger, try praying for them. If you can honestly get your heart to the place where you can ask God to bless them, you’ll be rewarded with an overwhelming peaceful feeling in your gut. Believe me, I’ve had my share of wanting to fight back with fire—but it only makes me get MORE fired up. The only way I have been able to find peace during a hard time with another human is by praying for them. And when you pray—remember you have been forgiven—therefore you should immediately forgive others. I think prayer and forgiveness go hand-in-hand. You can’t have one without the other. That is why prayer brings such immediate and immense peace to my soul.

Don’t know what to pray? Try this simple prayer on for size: “God, let Your desires be my desires.” And then sit back and enjoy the path in life you are on, because it’s more than likely the path God wants you to be on, which means your life will be lived to it’s fullest potential.

WANT MORE?

Here’s a great video from one of my favorite pastors, Andy Stanley from North Point Community Churchhttp://yourmove.is/episode/red-letter-prayers/

Until my next life lesson… may you find peace and love in this crazy thing called life.