I'm in the middle of a lifegroup study with some awesome girls from church and we are doing a study on "Character Makeover" by Katie Brazelton and Shelley Leith. I've been in the group for 2 weeks because I began late when i decided it was time to focus on myself. The book is amazing.
This last week of study was over self-control. WOW is all I can say. Lots of things I need to work on. Here are some of the points of the chapter I want to focus on and remember:
-The strongest self-control is not self-control at all, but God Control. When we put our self under God's control, then we will find the power we need to exercise self-control.
-You don't have to react to anger with ANGER.
-A self-controlled person is able to let go of the uncontrollable and unchangeables in her life, and focus on what is controllable and what is changeable.
This translates into some life principles that we tell our children, but to which we should pay attention to as well:
-Just because it's fun doesn't make it right
-Just because everyone is doing it doesn't make mean you have to
-Just because you want it doesn't mean you should get it
-Just because you can afford it doesn't mean you should buy it
Anatomy of some uncontrolled emotions:
The tongue is a small thing, but what enormous damage it can do. A great forest can be set on fire by one tiny spark... The tongue... can turn our whole lives into a blazing flame of destruction and disaster.
Stress isn't the same as anxiety. Stress can lead to anxiety, but stressed out people aren't necessarily worried about it-- they're just OVERLOADED. Stress is basically a problem of too much: too much to do, too many people to take care of, too many conflicting priorities, too many problems to solve.
Top TEN DE-stressors
1. Don't add to your stress; Start Eliminating
2. Remove some stress by delegating
3. Release your stress by rejuvenating
4. Refocus on your passion when stress is escalating
5. Don't avoid your stress, it will be waiting for you
6. Don't increase your stress by exaggerating
7. Address your stress by prioritizing and evaluting
8. Get help with your stress by organizing and coordinating
9. Manage your stress by not deviating
10. Deepen your faith, when stress turns to crisis.
-The difference between good and bad habits is that the reward for a bad habit is temporary and is often followed by negative consequences, and the reward for a good habit can be more long-lasting and is often followed by positive results.
-The key to breaking bad habits and foregoing their addictive rewards is to replace them with good habits, which carr more significant reward.
Just to put this out there the chapter we are on and the church sermon on Sunday went hand in hand "What has mastered You"
One thing I could think of is SODA. I know kind of lame, but it really has been my WEAKNESS for awhile. We were late to church because i needed to run to Sonic and get my morning 1.07 large vanilla coke. As I sat and thought about it. I go to Sonic at least once a day sometimes twice (at least 3 times a week).
I know most people are like it's just soda not a biggie... But as I stand back from the situation and look into it. I'm on Day 4 NO SODA. Not only was I hurting my body, but the checkbook! It's been a rough 4 days, yesterday being the worst so far.. Headache.. Temptation AH! But I overcame and had only 1 cup of tea. I've been drinking green tea and water and my headache didn't come back today. Thank you God for answering that prayer.
Prayer I will share with you all to help out if you are in the situation where something has mastered you and you are tempted and need a little extra push to get through. Look to God... He's AMAZING! :)
There are some habits that have power over me, and I have been powerless to overcome them. Give me your power, I pray, to break free from them. Give me the willpower to avoid situations that will lead to temptation, and help me to start living like my broken places are dead, because they are. Replace my bad habits with good ones, such as filling myself every day in your Word, and spending regular time with like-minded friends who can encourage me and hold me accountable. And, Lord, I turn over my schedule to you. I confess that I have taken on some things that you never intended for me to do, and as a result, my days are too full to stop, rest, have fun, bring joy to someone, listen to you, and respond to divine interruptions. Help me to make some tough decisions about mya activities, because i do not want to be foolish, but to learn what you want me to do.
In the name of Jesus, amen.