I came to some conclusions recently during a time of prayer. I know it was a lesson previously learned, but one where I’ve slipped recently.
I’m not good at self-control — food, time management, etc — and while that might be common to plenty of folks, it is now a thorn in my side. Improving that skill is of even more importance as I enter into a new schedule. I simply can’t waste time.
I want to be a better writer, better athlete, better Christian, better friend. That ultimately has to be my motivation for whatever it is that I do, because relying on the spark of emotion (like anger) is too finite. It will extinguish, and when it does — or when a bigger emotion shows up, like grief or heartbreak — you are dead in the water. As I recently was.
Unless, perhaps, that anger is really just dedicated focus. Ultimately, my opponent isn’t someone else — it’s me. And as any Christian knows, rare are the foes that stymie us more than ourselves. I am reminded of this Martin Luther quote:
I am more afraid of my own heart than of the pope and all his cardinals. I have within me the great pope, Self.
Let it be noted that the great reformer had hardly a good opinion of the pope and his cardinals.
For me, in order to do what I want to do, I have to grab the reins again. I’m in the process of doing it, but the battle is painful and long. Blessedly, the reward is better. As a lot of coaches and teachers will tell you, learn to love the process and the results will come. For me, that means loving my nutritional goals and working in the gym. It means embracing the thinking and planning behind these blog posts, and enjoying the grind of school. It means looking forward to time spent with God, be it in His word, at church or in fellowship.
Most of that isn’t easy, but so what?