Sunday, January 20, 2008

Out of Control

self'-control', n. restraint of oneself or one's actions, feelings, etc.

also known as... self-discipline, self-possesion, restraint, poise, composure, reserve (see resolution)...determination, will, decision, strength of mind, resolve, master over self, moral couirage, tenacity, doggedness

also referred to as... "denying one's flesh" (the flesh, or the human nature and its desires are often driving human choices...Scripture says to deny the flesh - or refuse to give in to our human desires - and instead seek God's will)

I have been on a binge! A binge of selfishness and greed. I have been out of control!

While pregnant with this last beautiful child (Malakai), I ate what I wanted when I wanted it. The result - a weight gain of 49 pounds (not something a woman nearing 30 can afford to do to her body).

I spent the last year (or many years, really) of my life spending money on what I wanted when I wanted it. The result - every single bill behind (some unpaid for 3 months), creditor phone calls, NSF cheques and the accompanying fees.

While I know I should be up each morning reading my Bible, praying, and connecting with my Lord, I hit the snooze button more days than not. I'd rather sleep. When my kids ask me to play games, colour, read, or just hang out, I say "not right now" more often than not. I'd rather clean (or cook, or do the banking, or be on the phone, or be on the computer...). If someone is misbehaving and I should go conduct some discipline, yelling from where I'm currently seated/standing/working seems to the modus operanus. The list could go on, and on, and on.

I have no self-control, no discipline, no will. (Proverbs 25:28 Like a city whose walls are broken down is a [woman] who lacks self-control.)

We live in a culture that tells us we can all have whatever we want whenever we want it, and without having to work for it...we deserve it...why wait, when we can have it now...we can have MILLIONS of dollars working only hours a week...we can have a Cindy Crawford body only exercising 10-minutes a day..."I'm worth it!"

God's world can be so counter-intuitive! He wants me to deny my desire to be lazy (and hit snooze, or yell)...He wants me to deny my desire to shop more and pay bills less...He wants me to deny my desire to stuff my face with all the yummy and unhealthy things I crave. Why?

Titus 2:3-5 Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the Word of God.

Ah-hah! I am supposed to learn self-control in my life so that other women can learn from me (from my mistakes and my successes). I am supposed to learn self-control in my life so that no one will think badly of God or His Word (and my selfish and greedy nature will not cause anyone to reject the Gospel of Christ). (LOL, not that I consider my almost-30 self an 'older woman,' but that I have more years of Spiritual growth under my belt, if you know what I mean.)

This year, I am committed to getting things back under control. Not through my own strength, not by my own will - but with the help of the Only One who can truly teach me to deny my flesh. I believe that if we are obedient in the small things, obedience in the bigger things just naturally occurs. So by practicing on my small issues (eating, spending) I believe it will be easier to work out my big issues (time in the Word, yelling).

Here are the steps I've taken so far: I'm on Weight Watchers and have a membership at the gym (maybe I'll start doing a "Makeover Monday" series so you can track my progress along with me, what do you think?). AND, my beautiful friend Christine spent HOURS with me figuring out a budget that works (and most importantly gets the bills paid and kept up-to-date)...

Here's what God has been doing to help me with the other issues: I have been virtually unable to sleep past 5am for 2 weeks (it's not the most pleasant wake-up call, as my back pain has been terrible, but the agony typically eases by about 9am) - what else does one do at 5am besides drink coffee and read the Bible?! AND, I have been really noticing how the children yell at one another and at us (Pat and I)...when I hear it I can hear my own tone of voice and words echoing back at me (yikes!).

My hope and prayer is this: may I submit myself to the will of God for my life (rather than the selfish desires of my human nature and what the world tells me I should focus on), and through this "denying of my flesh" may other women think good things about God, and may my children see and love the Jesus that lives in my heart...


  1. Hi ET,

    This is my first time here. Loved your style of writing (stream of conciousness?). Though I am not much into God I hope that He gives you strenght to change yourself.

    BTW, about your backache, maybe a new matteress can help?

  2. Hey, what gym do you go to? and are the drop in classes extra? My butt has seriously grown since shrinking this summer (after much hard work--blast)

  3. Nice to meet you, ottayan! Thanks for commenting. :) As for the new mattress, it's an idea...but since God has been pretty clear about not buying any more stuff on credit, it'll have to wait. Until then, exercise and physio, here I come!

  4. Hey Kate!
    I've been going to the Collicutt. I'm not 100% in love with their equipment or classes, but the childcare is top-notch and I like the feature of being able to pay month-by-month with no 'locked in' membership. (There are some classes that cost, but the drop-in classes in the Motion Studio are included in the $37 monthly fee.)

    BUT, if you don't need to bring any kiddos, and you are able to lock into a membership for a year, I LOVE the machines and classes at Only Women's (the childcare, though, can be a bit, ummmm, overflowing...). :)


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