The devil knocks at our doors every day! Every time we are unable to resist temptation, we invite Satan to rule our lives. It’s that simple. For example, too much of anything creates an unhealthy imbalance, whether it is food, drink, sex, drugs, work, you name it. Worse, if we engage in immoral behavior, we not only open the door, but we set the table for the devil to take up housing and we push God away. So, what is the remedy? Embrace the virtue of self-control. Use your God-given intellect to make prudent choices. The first choice that you need to make is who do you want in your life: God or the devil?
Self-control is difficult to master on one’s own. As humans, we have the tendency to sin and move away from God. The devil makes the things that we take to excess look, feel, taste, and sound so good. That extra piece of pie, or one more drink; that extra-marital affair that spices up your life, that additional pain pill to relieve pain, that extra hour or two away from your family to get things done at work every night – you can rationalize it all and before you know it, you are addicted to whatever it was that tempted you. When this happens, you need to make a choice: embrace self-control to break away from sin and return to God, or continue down the path of personal ruin.
If we choose to make the right choices, the healthy choices, then exercising self-control helps us to grow spiritually because we reach out to Jesus. We realize that we need Him to help us fight temptations to sin and conquer addictions.
For myself, I made a decision approximately two years ago to lose weight. I was eating too much for my 5’ 2” body. I was 60 pounds overweight. I decided that I wanted God in my life and I definitely did not want anything to do with the devil. So I told the devil to hit the road and take a hike. I made room for God, and only God. I embraced self-control with the help of Jesus. I lost the 60 pounds and, in the process, I have grown spiritually. Whatever demons are interrupting your life, tell them to hit the road, and then turn toward God. Seek His assistance and live a happier and healthier life. Amen!
Once you’ve turned toward God, what comes next? How do you successfully practice self-control? We’ll address the answers to these questions in our next reflection. Don’t miss it!