Here are three short biblical texts to launch this post.
For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7
Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8
But the fruit of the Spirit is . . . self-control. Galatians 5:23
I think I've gotten better at this as the years have gone by.
There are many facets to self-control/discipline, but in part it means that you are not reactive and certainly not over-reactive to the things that are happening around you.
Calm, measured, careful, deliberate . . .
If you are feeling worried, anxious, stressed, fearful, insecure, or aggressive . . . then above all, now is the time for self-control.
If you think you are being threatened or challenged . . . self-control and not hasty response will be your best approach.
If you are in a crisis . . . self-control is necessary so you can really understand what is truly going on and what is needed.
If you have anger issues . . . then you are already familiar with what happens when you lose control due to anger.
This does not mean a leader is slow when the need is there for decisive and necessary action. Some mistakes are made because a leader is too slow to act. Many others are made because we react too quickly.
Nor does self-control mean independence from God, like you are "willing" yourself for control and mastery of your self. Quite the contrary, daily prayer, steady practicing of the spiritual disciplines of surrender and trust, a reflective, contemplative bent that leads to great self-awareness AND God-focus are vital for self-control.
So . . . how are you doing on this area?
And . . . are there any particulars where you know you have room for growth?
Tomorrow's Post: what we all want to be . . .
Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtions Internatinal