As you may have already come to know, I love to talk out loud to God and we work together on my daily tasks. As I fold clothes or load the dishwasher, He is there with me as I serve my family and He listens when my heart is heavy and He loves it when I am giving Him praise because I saw the little things that He did for me. I was caught off guard one evening because it was His speaking that opened my eyes. As I was asking for guidance and help He spoke to my spirit… My sweet child, I cannot control your actions. You are in control of more than you realize, everything you do matters. I gave you free will and the knowledge to make decisions. I expect you to come to me for help but it is your responsibility to act in such a way as to honor Me.
It that moment He felt so near to me that I realized that He makes up every fiber of my being. That is why He felt so close. He knows our hearts, our minds, and every hair of head on our head. See Matthew 10:30. He made us the instant we were conceived but thought of us long before then. He knows us in and out. (Read Psalm 139:13, Ephesians 1:4) He is more mysterious than anything we can imagine. He is in control of every function of our body, He commands our hearts to beat and breathed life into our lungs. He works at the smallest molecular levels and still remains our God. There comes a point in our make-up that God let’s go and gives us control. I like to think of all the images I’ve ever seen of a daddy helping a child learn to ride a bike. He eventually lets go, to experience the fullness of life while staying right with us and never tiring out of picking us up, giving us encouragement, and helping us try this life, daily, over and over again. We may never quite “master” this life but He sure lets us experience it. He can step in at any second and change our direction or say, “rides over” time to go home. Ultimately He loves us deeper than we can image and wants the best for us.
God spoke to me through His Word on my self-control, or lack of. He gave me direction to help guide me when I am coasting through life and making choices. He also reminded me and wanted me to remind you that in all times He is there to speak to you when you need Him.
At the time I was preparing for this lesson for myself, my marriage was painfully unhappy. Self-control was the point at which I tend to lose my footing, stumble, and fall. It’s where the deepest wounds happen and they take a great deal of time to heal. Those wounds are not only mine but they become my husbands as well. My lack of self-control is why my husband expected nothing greater of me. It was predictable and my temper got the best of me. If he wanted to push a button to make me angry, he easily could. So when God spoke directly to me on this topic He was addressing my weakest part.
As Christian wives we must consistently work on ourselves. It is essential to our personal development, spiritual growth and Christian service that we study on, practice and learn how to exhibit self-control. It is not a natural behavior of anyone to have self-control as we are all born selfish and it is received as the crowning fruit of the Spirit. Read Galatians 5:22 Sometimes when I feel lacking in a fruit my prayers become banging on heavens gates cries to the Holy Spirit to give me what I need. He will not withhold it.
What are the Fruits of the Spirit?
There are 9 and are you sensing a theme yet in what we are studying?
Sisters, this is where we dig. This is where we pray. As followers of Christ not only are we to receive the blessings of God but also be a reflection of His character to all whom the blessings encounter. Godly virtues are the fruit of the Holy Spirit and are evidence of our salvation, the genuine work of the Holy Spirit.
"We can do no great things, only small things with great love." Mother Teresa
Matthew 26:6-13 Is a story of extravagant love. Mary did something over the top, she didn't care what anyone thought and stepped across culture norms to show her Savior how much she loved him. We truly have no idea what she was thinking but what she did was deliberate. She poured out her expensive perfume onto Jesus. Her act echoed the preparation of a body for burial. She knew He was going to give it all for her, for us. From her precious alabaster jar she anointed Jesus with her love. When was the last time you were deliberate with honoring your husband? No matter what the world says, what is considered norm, it's time that women rise up and acknowledge our precious place along side our husbands. Only you know what would honor your husband. Consider today of being deliberate and self-controlled in how you honor him. Mary broke open her jar and poured out a love offering. What could be your love offering? Pour it out. I promise, what you pour out to honor your husband, God will refill. Are you willing to pour out your time? Money? Gifts? Talents? I pray your extravagant offering of love is received with great joy.
I am married to my high school sweetheart. We've been pressing ahead together for over 24 years. We have 5 beautiful children; 3 by my own body and 2 through foster to adopt. I wrote this Bible study in 2009, years ago, for myself and shared it on my blog. It is very dear to my heart. It's been tweaked and edited many times and I'm proud to be bringing it back to you. Over the years I received countless emails from women who credited this study with changing their marriage for the better. Since removing it from my old blog I have received just as many emails asking when it would return. I hope you enjoy spending your time in God's Word with me.