"A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls." ...Proverbs 25:28
Often while Tom and I watch tv, someone playing the part of 'the other woman (or man)' will sadly quip,"You can't help who you fall in love with." You know, like it's biblical truth.
That's when one or both of us will blurt, "Oh, yes you can! Just nip those (untoward) feelings immediately. In the bud."
Other times, characters declare, "But I can't help how I feel!" and we respond, "Yes, you can! Sheesh. Don't act so helpless."
The Bible really is true. Second Timothy 3:3 says in these Last Days, people will be without self-control. It's like the emotions control lever is missing.
But uh-oh. Fast-forward to yesterday when I had a kinda relapse of this 4 1/2 week-old bronchitis with more coughing, a slight chill and doing tasks, then needing to lie on the couch with my blanket, feeling nagged by the laundry, cooking and ironing I should be doing.
At 5:00, Tom arrived home not coughing, not feeling tired, but rather chirpy about his great day. He practically skipped to his room to change clothes.
That's when sudden self-pity tears stung my eyes. "I'm so tired of feeling only 90% of myself!" I thought. "And coughing, resting, eating pineapple and standing over steaming water and-- This isn't fair. What if I always will feel like this? What if---"
But then I said, "Debra! You stop that this minute. You are not helpless. Stop feeling sorry for yourself. In Jesus' name, don't you dare choose self-pity!"
You know what happens if you stretch your foot out too far into Self-Pity Pool, right? Ol' Self Pity, himself, rises from green, murky depths, grabs your toe and yanks you under with him. Then you spend the next weeks trying to rise to the surface. Or maybe you just grow used to living down there.
Well, not me. Not this time. So I left Self Pity Pool's edge.
I finished making sloppy joes which we ate while watching the final new X-Files (we early-to-bed folks appreciate On Demand). And yes, I coughed, drank more seltzer water, rested and patted Daniel The Cat on the head while lying on the couch.
But I also breathed sighs of relief. Through self-control, I'd not been pulled silently, helplessly beneath the Self-Pity Pool. Through Jesus, I can stay above and not beneath. Through Him, my self-control lever still does work.
“Everybody in the world is seeking happiness—and there is one sure way to find it. That is by controlling your thoughts. Happiness doesn't depend on outward conditions. It depends on inner conditions.”
― Dale Carnegie,
"And the Lord shall make you the head, and not the tail; and you shall be above only, and you shall not be beneath, if you heed the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you this day and are watchful to do them." ... Deuteronomy 28:13
Sometimes it's vital to ask ourselves, "Just who--or what--is in charge here?"
I mentioned before that Tom and I really appreciate how Tim Allen fits mentions of God or Jesus nearly every week into Last Man Standing. I begin each episode with almost a waaait-for-it attitude.
Well, here's a short article about a scene from last week's episode, one I'd wanted to cheer aloud, except it would have set me to coughing. :)
And over at Facebook (where I discovered this article) what a delight to read all the supportive comments there, as well!
P.S. So far I'm having a much better morning than yesterday. Color me Extremely Grateful!
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