Dear Christian educators,
Self-control is really not "self" control but Spirit control. When we attempt to control ourselves (like our tongues!) we fail. It is no wonder there is so much frustration. It's like Paul explained: "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate to do." We need help! The good news is that when we believe in Jesus, He gives us another Advocate, the Holy Spirit who will guide us in all things.
Each day during this season of Lent, I will post one verse and pray it with you. Consider saying the verse in your quiet time and praying it also. You may use the same prayer or try your own. Each day until Easter (except Sundays) there will be a new post that contains: a verse, a small reflection, a prayer using the Scripture and an image. Feel free to share the images because I made them with the Bible Lens app and took all the pictures. What a creative God we serve!
Self-control, to me, is an oxymoron. Can we really control ourselves? Without the help of the Holy Spirit, unequivocally – no! However, with the gracious goodness of our God, we can learn to ask for His quick conviction. As long as we are human, we will sin, but as a Christian we must repent and change immediately. Self-control in the classroom covers our mistakes, our foolish comments that we never meant to say and the areas we need to overcome. Our students should not be the recipients of our issues. We must make a conscious effort to present ourselves as an educator of excellence for their sake.
In Dictionary.com, self-control is defined as: self-con·trol [self-kuhn-trohl, self-]
noun, control or restraint of oneself or one's actions, feelings, etc. In the classroom, self-control encompasses every fruit of the Spirit, every emotions and feeling, and everything we do. Being in control of oneself, is being on time, being an example of faithfulness to our students and colleagues, using words that are kind and good and being aware of our influence. All teachers are change agents, but not all change is positive influence. With God’s help and the empowering of the Holy Spirit, Christian educators can walk out their high calling with grace and confidence while always being lawful. Some probing questions that may help with self-control in the classroom are:
- Am I leaving my personal issues at home?
- Am I bringing my A game to the students (or co-workers) each day?
- Am I choosing my words wisely?
- Am I praying before the day begins for a double-portion of wisdom for that day?
- Am I longing to be a better ambassador for Christ so that my students benefit from having a Christian as their teacher?
You gave us a spirit not of fear! Instead, You gave us a spirit of power and love and self-control. Only Your Spirit can make that possible in us O Lord. Thank You for the daily encouragement of Your Word for it is living and active, sharper than a two-edged sword, rightly dividing soul and spirt, bone and marrow and discerning the intentions of the heart. Create in me a clean heart O Lord, that I may have the spirit of self-control. Thank You for this bold promise. I ask in the powerful name of Jesus. Amen.