LIVING LIFE IN Self control
Worry is an area I deal with greatly as a mother and wife – about my family’s health, future, studies etc. Regardless of the awareness that I am only a steward to my children and heavenly father knows what they need even before I ask, sometimes I feel helpless not to worry. In those times repeating Philippines 4:6 brings divine peace in my heart which surpasses all human understanding. I realised that some days when I feel I am filled with God’s grace, I can be less angry, more patient, not losing temper comparing to other days. So whenever possible I make sure that I, as a GIVER (to my family and people around me), RECEIVE from the everlasting source through personal prayer, sacraments and Holy Mass so that there is enough to give as if I won’t be able to give£100 to someone if I only have £50 with me. Sometimes comparison may lead to jealousy without even my knowledge and I utter like St Paul “I do not understand my own actions”. I cry before my high priest who sympathise with my weakness and approach the throne of grace, with boldness so that I may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need (Heb 4:15-16).
Like an apple tree can only produce apple not any other fruits, a child of God, led by the Holy Spirit will produce self-control, which is one of the fruit of Holy spirit.
I had always thought of self-control to mean giving up the freedom that I had. It was when I tried to live a more disciplined life that I realised that the lack of freedom in my life was due to the indulgences I had allowed, which influenced most of my decisions. I prayed for the grace to be able to make decisions through discernment of what is good and right, and not based on my desires alone. This prayer helped identify the areas in my life that I needed to actively exercise self-control in.It involved giving up social media and certain apps for a while and fasting as a way of interceding. And in these situations, it is only through the power of the Holy Spirit that I can overcome any temptations and continue to strive even when I fail.
Ann Divya Thomas
The seeds of “Self-Control”were first sown in me by my mother. I heard “Self-control” first from her, when she used to take my mind away from expensive clothes and accessories. Her words – “Self-control is an act of piety”, still rings in my mind. It gave me the feeling of doing a great mission when I compromised on many things I desired. In fact,during my childhood, the key area where I needed to “control” my “self” was to “let go of things”. As I grew up, the necessity of “Self- control” increased. I understood the importance to master my emotions especially my anger, fear and pain,for living a joyful life.The verse from Sirach 19, “Be brave, it will not make you burst!” is something that I cling on to sustain “Self-Control”.Still the endless journey continues to attain this art, with the help of Holy Spirit who showers his fruits on those who call upon him.
Step 1. Take Glass of Water. Step 2. Take a long sip – do not swallow or gulp. Step 3. Hold for 10 seconds.
If someone were to suggest you this as a means of controlling your misplaced anger or sinful thought, you might end up throwing another fit. Yet this is a scene from a movie, and all did end well with the character. Well, at least whoever was to be the object of contention got a 10 second break. When it comes to anger, self-doubt or lust you’d be ill-disposed if you ask someone to hold a mouthful of water until the feeling dissipates. We know from scripture (Matthew 5:28), the inception of sin is the thought itself.
Daily it is good to think of those moments which caused us to lose our self-control. Here’s how I managed to work on the myriad of my issues with the vices against this virtue. As I sit to pray I call to mind those instances where I failed. Having surrendered them, I offer prayers for the individuals with whom I might have locked horns with. If I were the sole offender, I meditate on the verse 2 Timothy 2:22, or any scripture that I’m inspired to. I receive the sacrament of Reconciliation over the week and commit to not rehash after praying the Anima Christi.
It may so happen that we repeatedly find ourselves committing to certain causes, yet fall habitually. It is only the mercy of God and the intercession of Mother Mary that can help us up. Spend time over each day meditation on the mysteries of the Rosary. Self-control is a virtue par excellence.
The only question that remains is if we’re ready to seek the virtue of self-control in all earnestness. In order for His Name to be glorified, let us start.