Self-Discipline and the Christian Walk

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Written by, Kim Johnson, Author of “I Am My Sister”

I have always been able to control myself, even as a small child. Self-discipline was never really an issue for me, especially once I got it in my head that I had better do the right thing. However…there have been times when my flesh hasn’t always fallen in line with my thinking. I can remember a few times when the Holy Spirit has told me to do one thing, and I simply choose to do something else. I have to giggle when I think about it, because I rationalized my disobedience by telling myself that it was myself talking to me. Sisters, I have loads of stories that I could share with you where I have listened to myself. Some of my stories would make you laugh, and some, you would say, make me look pathetic.

The thing is this, we cannot do everything we feel like doing as Christians. We can’t tell people off because they hurt our feelings or offend us (even though we may want too). And when people treat us bad or poorly we can’t treat them the same way. Instead, we have to let things go and pray for those that hurt us.

I know you are probably saying it’s hard to do these things, but I’m telling you, you can do it; I’m telling myself as well, because God knows, I am a work in progress.
Joel Osteen (2014), my favorite Pastor, tells us that “we cannot be loose in our morals. We cannot let our flesh have its way. We have to exercise self-control and discipline, we cannot say things, and then regret what we said later. Had we been disciplined in what we said earlier, we wouldn’t feel bad later, and then wish we had never said it the first place. Self-control and self-discipline go hand and hand, we must stay in control in all things and ways.”

In any event, the apostle Paul tells us about his own hard time trying to do the right thing in life. He says, “What I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate (Romans 7:15-20).

“All of us can relate to the fierce internal struggle that Paul describes. We find ourselves succumbing to sin, even though we want to honor God. The thing is this, until we stand in Jesus’ presence, we will all experience this battle. The only way to win is by dying to ourselves so that Christ can live through us and by submitting to the Spirit’s overcoming wisdom and power” (Stanley).

So what does dying to the flesh mean? According to the bible, the spirit is ready but the flesh is weak. The flesh is a source of temptation. The desires of the flesh can be sinful only if we give into them…we must die to the flesh by listening to the voice of God, and not ourselves! Dying in the Flesh is to trade your will, for God’s will, for your life.

Sistah to Sistah, do you hear me? Are you exercising self-control and self-discipline over your life?

References
Osteen, J. (2014, May 24). Being Disciplined and Rule Over Your Feelings. Retrieved from https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=being+disciplined+and+rule+over+your+feelings+sermon&view=detail&mid=7E2EEA1ED9D8F15A855B7E2EEA1ED9D8F15A855B&FORM=VIRE
Stanley, C. (n.d.). Romans 7:15-20. In Life Principles Bible. Thomas Nelson.

 

 

 

Rejection and Rejected

God’s got you!

I Am My Sister

pexels-photo-594421.jpegWritten by – Kim Johnson – immysister.org

I think…rejection is one of those emotions that can destroy you if you aren’t grounded in something. I’ve been thinking about this topic for a while now, especially since I have firsthand knowledge and experience on the subject; as well as, knowing quite a few people struggling just to hold it together themselves. I actually took the time to look up the meaning of rejection and rejected, just to see if the dictionary could explain why, we as people, feel so terrible when we go through these emotions. According to the Merriam Webster dictionary “rejected is to refuse to hear, receive, admit, rebuff or repel something; and rejection, is the spurning of a person’s affections”. After reading these two definitions, I came to the conclusion that rejection and being rejected all boil down to, heartache, pain, sorrow and long endless nights (well, at…

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The Eye of the Storm

I Am My Sister

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Written by: Kim Johnson – immysister.org

Sometimes, I just have to sit back and praise God for no reason at all. When I think of all the times God should have turned His back on me and He didn’t, I am just plain ole grateful. And even in my brokenness, when I went through Hurricane Katrina (figuratively speaking), and I thought I wouldn’t survive, God was right there extending me grace and mercy.

Humph…just thinking about life. Storms. God; and how they are all intertwined, I am awed. For instance, let’s look at Hurricane Katrina metaphorically. According to an article I read, the storm crept up on Louisiana early in the morning, causing catastrophic damage and death. Well, in my mind’s eye, I imagine everyone was sleeping, feeling warm, safe, secure, and not a care in the world. Then out of nowhere the category 3 storm hit with 100 -140…

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Walking away from Toxic Relationships

Written by – Kim L. Johnson, author of, I Am My Sister

Sometimes you just have to walk away from people. Have you ever been around a person with an argumentative spirit? They are always angry. They’re easily stressed out about one thing or another; and they totally misunderstand everything that you say to them. These people take things the wrong way all the time. You could be in a great mood and say something to them with no malice in your heart, or no other meaning other than what you are saying, and yet, they take it the wrong way. I hate to say it, but, I know one or two people like this, and I find myself not wanting to have anything to do with them. Conversations with these people mess with my spirit and peace.

I have a name for the people I described above, I call them peace stealers. These peace stealers will suck the joy out of your life and make you physically sick if you let them. You can try to explain yourself to these people, you can even try to make them calm down. You can tell them that they are going to have high blood pressure if they don’t learn to relax and let things go. You can talk, talk, and talk, until you turn blue in the face.

The thing is Sisters, sometimes you got to let these folks go. Joel Osteen, one of my favorite pastors said it best. He said, “You don’t have to cut people off entirely or never speak to them again. But you should put up some healthy boundaries. You don’t have to make a big announcement. Just little by little, spend less and less time with that person. If you don’t remove the wrong people out of your life, you’ll never meet the right ones, especially in your inner circle, the people who are closest to you. The people that surround you should be stable, consistent, happy, Godly, and responsible people who move you toward your destiny. As they say, like iron sharpens iron, you make each other better.
Moreover, we see this principle with Jesus. After a long day of teaching and praying for people, the scripture says He left the crowds and went away to rest. There were still many needy people asking for prayer. I’m sure some of them thought, “Wow, we traveled all this way, and He didn’t even wait to pray for us. He let us down.” Jesus wasn’t being rude or overlooking their needs; He was taking care of Himself. He knew He needed to get away and get quiet so He could be refreshed to be more effective.

Likewise, with you, there will always be people who need you, someone who needs rescuing, needs encouraging, or needs your help. However, if you try to meet everyone’s needs, you’ll end up run down over time, even burned out. Your number one priority is to keep yourself healthy. If Jesus was willing to walk away from needs to protect His peace and stay at rest, then we need to be willing to walk away from things that we know are stealing our peace, too!” (Osteen, 2016).

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References
Osteen, J. (2016, May 20). Walk Away from Peace Stealers. Retrieved from https://www.joelosteen.com/Pages/Blog.aspx?blogid=11022