Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Prayer for Self-Control

Let us not be like others . . . but let us be alert and self-controlled . . . putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.
1 Thessalonians 5:6,8

What in the world? I am just trying to implement a few imperatives in my own life, such as to pray for my kids, listen and digest my pastor's messages for blog purposes, and subscribe to daily emailed Bible readings. And lately they keep leading me back to this same theme of self-discipline. I get it! I suck at this and it's my time to fall in line!

I also notice because I have chosen this month to commit to writing a book. No big deal, just spew out 50,000 words by November 30. Not for the faint of heart, or the undisciplined. On this 5th day of the month, I am already struggling to sit in my chair and force myself to keep going.

A rare example of "alert" and focused

There is actually a fine difference between self-control and self-discipline, I suppose. The first involves keeping my emotions in check and resisting temptations. The second is the thing that forces me to follow through on my commitments such as raising extraordinary kids, writing a book, keeping a clean house, volunteering with MOPS, etc. But to me they are close enough to fit in the same category of convincing me that it's time to practice better time-management and be more intentional about what I do with that time.

While this post is dedicated to praying for my beautiful children, I have to pray it for myself as well. Actually, these prayers are part of the result of trying to build a little discipline in my own life, as well as reaching for that goal of raising extraordinary children. So it all fits.

It also fits because my precious daughter seems to be exactly that, my daughter. Day after day she brings home conduct reports saying that she needs to learn to control her hands and feet, and her words to friends. My own shortcomings are painfully obvious to me as I hear about the crazy ways she acts out at school.

But the seed of despair that wants to paralyze me when I read her reports, actually serves to drive me to prayer, both for her and for myself that we can address the root of the problem, a lack of self-control. I can't expect her to learn something I do not model very well, can I?

And so, my prayer for today, once again, is for both my children and myself:

Father, help us not to be like many others around us, but let us be alert and self-controlled in all we do.

Help us to put on faith and love to protect our hearts, and thank you for the hope of our salvation, which protects our thoughts and guards us with the power of Jesus.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by! I love hearing from you.