Day 10 – (Self-Control) – Tools Needed for a Successful Trek
Wisdom-Trek / Creating a Legacy
Welcome to Day 10 of our Wisdom-Trek and thank you for joining me.
This is Guthrie Chamberlain, Your Guide to Wisdom.
Today we continue to investigate the tools needed for a successful Wisdom-Trek.
Hello – and welcome to Wisdom-Trek! This is Guthrie Chamberlain and I am your Guide to Wisdom. This is Day 10 of our Trek as we continue to investigate the tools needed for a successful Wisdom-Trek.
Today we are recording our podcast/journal from our studio at The Big House in Marietta, Ohio. One of the pleasures of being at The Big House is to be able to walk around our property and realize that this is the same property that my parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents walked on.
The Big House was built in 1903 by my great-grandparents and it is still in the family. We only have about 5 acres of the original farm, which was long ago sold off in parcels and is now an older, but well maintained, suburban neighborhood. The small remaining portion is still as beautiful as always and is like stepping back in time to a mystic and wonderful place. We are grateful to be able to live here. As I am creating this podcast/journal this week, the peonies that used to be along the pasture fence line are in full bloom, and they are beautiful this year.
We would love for you to get to know us on a more personal level. Please leave your comments if you would like for me to continue to share some tidbits on a daily basis. Please also check out About Wisdom-Trek.
During these first 11 days of our podcast/journal we have setup base camp, discussed some guidelines, and chatted about the tools needed for a successful trek. My hope is that you have enjoyed this part of the trek as much as I have.
Today, we are continuing our exploration into the tools or equipment we need in order to gain wisdom, live fully, and enjoy our trek of life while we create a living legacy.
Our wheel analogy, is nearing completion as we once again consider love as the hub of the wheel and the remaining tools or attributes as the spokes stemming from a perfectly round hub. So far we have inserted the spokes of joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and gentleness.
In our 2nd analogy of love being your backpack for our trek, we only have this last tool/attribute to complete the set. I hope that these analogies help you to understand the importance of each of these traits.
The remaining spoke to make our wheel complete (or my 2nd analogy the tools in our backpack) is self-control.As with the previous attributes, self-control is referred to in the Bible as the “Fruit of the Spirit.” This fruit is an outward manifestation of the seeds we possess internally. As these attributes grow in us and produce good fruit they will allow us to create a legacy of wisdom, seek out discernment and insights, and boldly grow where few have chosen to grow before. In doing so, we will establish the framework in our lives that will truly allow us to “Live Long and Prosper.”
So onto our final attribute/tool which is self-control.
It is not by coincidence that self-control is our last attribute on the listing of the Fruit of the Spirit. Just as love is the hub of our wheel analogy, self-control can be compared to the rim of this same wheel.
If we look at the second analogy of love as our backpack, then self-controlwould be the drawstring or clasp that keeps all of the other tools in place.
Self-control applies to all areas of life, but for our time together today, we will focus on the attributes/tools that we have been exploring over the past few days.
In order to gain wisdom and create a living legacy, our lives must be rooted in love. On the other end of this spectrum, all the 7 middle attributes/tools require a measure of self-control in order for them to have a positive impact on our lives and the lives of others.
Let’s think about this for each of the 7 attributes between love and self-control.
Joy – Life, at times can be discouraging. To have joy in our lives, it must be grounded in love. The amount of joy we have in our lives is self-controlled by how we view everyday situations and circumstances.
Peace – Life is and will be hectic and chaotic. It is only when we control our environment by planning how we will handle and react to life’s issues ahead of time that we will be able to have an abounding peace in the middle of storms.
Patience – How patient we are in any situation is completely self-controlled. Yes there will be many situations where we feel the tide of impatience swelling up within us, maybe with no more than a moment’s notice. How impatient we become is ultimately determined by the amount of self-control we draw on. We have to prepare our minds ahead of time to how we will react when life does not go as we planned.
Kindness – Our choice of whether to be kind in every moment of every day is a choice that we make. It is self-controlled. Yes we may need to prepare our minds to actively and consciously think about these choices, but the choice is ours.
Goodness – This attribute stems from how kind we are to others. Choosing to be a good person and act good in each situation of our life is self-controlled. No one can make you react badly. It must be a conscious act to do good.
Faithfulness – Every day we make decisions to be faithful. There may be a lot of “little unfaithful decisions” that lead up to what others will recognize as unfaithfulness, but it is still always under our control. In the same manner, it is the little decisions that we make when we choose to be faithful in any area of life that will grow into a life of faithfulness.
Gentleness – To be gentle is to be self-controlled. We would never treat a baby roughly or speak to them harshly. (at least I would hope not) So why would be treat our family, friends and associates in a manner that is not gentle? We should treat everyone with Gentleness
We may not have control over how people treat us or what events happen to us, but we always have a choice on whether these situations will control us or if we will be self-controlled. Long-term, the only way people or events can control us is if we have given them permission to control our lives.
As we will look at quite often in our trek for wisdom, all actions are first controlled by our thoughts. Even when we make stupid, apparently mindless decisions (as I do from time to time), these decisions are based on what we have allowed into our minds previously. If you don’t control what you think about then you can’t control what you do. Each of us is responsible for his or her own actions or reactions.
A couple of verses in Proverbs use comparisons when mentioning self-control.
Proverbs 16:32, “Better to be patient than powerful; better to have self-control than to conquer a city.”
Proverbs 25:28, “A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls.”
In several passages in the New Testament, just as gentleness was a prerequisite for leadership positions within the Church, self-control is also listed. This is true in any type of organization. Leaders must have self-controlin all areas of life. A lack of self-control in one area is a precursor to a lack of self-control in other areas of life, even if it is not immediately evident.
Self-control is difficult but achievable. Ultimately it all begins in our minds but always ends in our actions.
We could go on with self-controlfor many days (and we will touch on it many times on our trek), but for today that is a large enough nugget to digest.
If you haven’t completed the 9 Tools Self-Assessment to see which attributes in your life need a little more nourishment and cultivating, I encourage you to do so.
That will finish our podcast/journal for today. Tomorrow we begin the 7 columns (Pillars) of wisdom. Please check into our “camp” tomorrow for another day on our Wisdom-Trek, Creating a Legacy.
As a reminder, I have provided tools to assist in these areas on our Free Resources webpage.
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