I Shouldn’t

by | Jun 11, 1997 | God's Plans, Priorities, Purpose

At the banquet, they passed the extra piece of yummy, heavily-iced cake to the overweight senior saint. He had already eaten one piece. ” Oh, I shouldn’t,” he said. But he did.

A young woman who sat watching the senior saint was agonizing over an alcohol addiction. ” I shouldn’t, ” she echoed, later that evening. But she did. A teenager who watched was struggling with his obsession with pornography. “I shouldn’t,” he said that night. But he did.

A mother who watched was deliberating whether or not to leave her husband for an attractive man at work. “I shouldn’t,” she said to herself. But she did. A young pastor, wrestling with resentment pushing him toward resigning his church, watched the senior saint succumb to temptation. “I shouldn’t,” he resisted.

Did he?

We never know who is watching.

We never know who is influenced by those ” little” decisions. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace . . . And self-control.

Self-control is not the same as “delayed gratification.” In our culture, “delay” means waiting two minutes in the fast food drive-thru instead of one. Unlike the woman who gave up Coke for Lent – and drank Pepsi instead – self- control may mean giving something up completely. Self-control is the ability to direct my physical desires to fulfill God’s purposes, instead of using them for my own personal gratification.

Self-control means taking care of my body in a God-honoring way. Self- control means biting my tongue instead of making that sarcastic remark. Self-control means saying “No” to something I want but that I know isn’t good for me.

Self-control says to a watching world that God’s long-range purposes for my life are more important than what looks good right now.

Author unknown. If anyone has a proprietary interest in this story please authenticate and I will be happy to credit, or remove, as the circumstances dictate.

Thanks to Daily Wisdom Majordomo@gospelcom.net


I Shouldn’t