July 19, 2022 · Bob Gass
“Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness.” 1 Timothy 4:7 NAS
The poet Horace wrote, “Rule your mind, or it will rule you.” When a wrong thought comes into your mind, you have two choices: entertain it or evict it! If you entertain it, it will move in and take up residence, and that’s when your troubles begin in earnest. In a democracy, you have the right to think, say, and do as you please as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone else. But if what you think, say, and do is hurting you, you say, “I have my rights!” Yes, but if you eat lots of sugar, salt, and fat, you have no right to complain when it affects your health. If you watch things on television and the internet that violate your conscience and God’s Word, you have no right to complain when you struggle spiritually. Wanting a better life for your family is a good thing, but if you’re drowning in debt because of out-of-control spending, don’t expect God to bail you out! Why does Paul write, “Discipline yourself”? Because no one else can do it for you! You say, “I’m going to begin tomorrow.” How long have you been saying that? What are the chances you will say it again tomorrow? Today is the tomorrow you were talking about yesterday. Make up your mind to take control of your life, and ask God to help you do it. He will. Paul wrote, “All things are legitimate [permissible—and we are free to do anything we please], but not all things are helpful (expedient, profitable, and wholesome). All things are legitimate, but not all things are constructive [to character] and edifying [to spiritual life]” (1 Corinthians 10:23 AMPC).