Temptation can suddenly occur when our desires entice us (James 1:14). Examples of everyday temptations include the tendency to overuse social media and to overeat. Although these activities may give immediate gratification, the continuation of these actions can be damaging to our well-being. Giving in to temptation and saying yes to sin (James 4:17) may only take a second, but the negative consequences can be long-lasting.
Self-Control is Powerful
Self-control is a way to deal with the conflict caused by temptation. It helps us overcome the flesh and obey the Lord. Self-control is the ability to regulate oneself, especially one’s emotions and desires, to accomplish a long-term goal. When we lack discipline in any area of our life, we leave ourselves unprotected and susceptible to sin (Proverbs 25:28). The ability to contain our behaviors and restrain impulses like the urge to gossip or overindulge keeps us safe from destruction. Exercising self-control is vital for our overall welfare, including our happiness, health, and prosperity.
A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls. – Proverbs 25:28 (ESV)
Equipped with Self-Control
As believers in the Lord, we have the Holy Spirit within us and are therefore empowered with self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). The Lord will never allow us to experience temptation to an extent that is more than our ability to cope (1 Corinthians 10:13). We can improve self-control with practice, i.e., by frequently denying the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21) and saying no when temptations arise.
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