Published 9:52 am Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Discipline. An ability or willingness to be mindful of one’s self, decisions and actions. When was the last time someone cut you off in traffic, took a parking space you had clearly been waiting for, or moved so slowly that you didn’t get through the traffic light that time. How did you feel? What were you thinking? What words were coming out of your mouth? Or going through your mind for that matter? Hehehe. When was the last time you went to a restaurant and your food came out wrong? People you had been seated well before, got their food before you? You ordered something with some spice, and the server hasn’t come back in 15 minutes to refill your beverage? Upset? Feel slighted? What are you thinking? What might you be saying? You’re not alone … we’ve all been there!

Controlling ourselves, our thoughts, our knee-jerk reactions can be difficult at times to be sure. Two questions may just be: what are we doing to improve our ability to control ourselves as followers of Jesus? What impact might that fruitfulness have on others?

It takes mindful practice, patience and an understanding of what it’s like to live in someone else’s shoes. When we are able to do that, with the help of the Holy Spirit, others notice a difference in us. How we respond versus how others react. Read God’s Word, pray, listen for guidance. Self-control is one of the biggest witnesses of where we are in our lives with Christ. Witness well.

Tim Beck is pastor of Kenbridge United Methodist Church. His email address is