I?ve been reading the Pastoral Epistles recently in my quiet times (I & II Timothy, and Titus). As I read Titus this morning a theme stuck out to me. 6 times in this short letter, the Apostle Paul tells Titus to teach people to be “self-controlled”. Each time it is in reference to a different group of people within the church. Other instructions are given, but the theme of self-control is woven throughout the letter.
- Displaying proper judgement
- Showing restraint
- Being disciplined
- Having mastery of one?s thoughts, emotions, words, actions
- Being Patient
??That?s a difficult task! One that I fall short of on a regular basis. I want my life to be marked by self-control, but often it isn?t. It?s so easy to make the decision to not do things I know I should (get proper rest, eat right, spend time investing in my spiritual growth) and to do the things I know I shouldn?t (react in anger, waste time, get in impatient).
My reading in Titus this morning reminded me of the importance of daily laying my life before Christ…of choosing obedience to God over submission to my own will/desires….of being self-controlled. It?s what Jesus modeled for us in his life and death. It?s the mark of a disciple, of a new creation, of one who has been set free from sin.