The ability to exercise restraint or control over one's self, actions, feelings, emotions, reactions, desires, etc. by one's own will.
self-discipline, self-restraint, willpower, levelheadedness.
The self-control, however, which derives from the presence of the Spirit in our thoughts and emotions, is undergirded by the power of God as believers yield themselves to the Lord in obedience to His will.
It is not automatic (as much as I would really, really love for it to be, because then it wouldn't be difficult...but it also wouldn't come with growth or fruit either would it?) Let me put it to you the way a lovely woman taught yesterday evening that I had the pleasure of sitting under: "Did you choose the clothes you are wearing today and physically put them on? Or did they just jump on you?" Self-control like any other Fruit of the Spirit, as much as we do receive the Spirit and the identity of Christ when we come to know Him personally and are cleansed by His blood, it is still a choice. So how do we create a new normal? We do by getting a revelation of an important truth: We cannot control other people and no one can control you but you. And rejecting a lie that says: "I must control them so I can have some control over my own quality of life." --Danny Silk, Loving Our Kids on Purpose
Can we manage ourselves no matter what our houses look like? Or how our children are behaving? Or the attitude of our husbands? Many times we give our self-control away to these things. With our "Spiritual Remote Control" we shut off our "ears" to the Holy Spirit, and our emotional reactions skyrocket. It's in these times I know that I get in trouble; when my impatience, fear or anger (or all of the above!) is flailing around wildly like a loose animal whose face just got popped by a porcupine. Nice picture, huh? Imagine this shot the next time you are witness to someone losing their self-control, and you'll not only know exactly what I mean, but be encouraged not to settle any longer for yourself choosing to look and behave like this either. ;)
- Romans 12:2 - Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].
- Galatians 5:16 - But I say, walk and live [habitually] in the [Holy] Spirit [responsive to and controlled and guided by the Spirit]; then you will certainly not gratify the cravings and desires of the flesh (of human nature without God).
- Philippians 2:13 - [Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight.
- Romans 8:9 - But you are not living the life of the flesh, you are living the life of the Spirit, if the [Holy] Spirit of God [really] dwells within you [directs and controls you]. But if anyone does not possess the [Holy] Spirit of Christ, he is none of His [he does not belong to Christ, is not truly a child of God].
- Romans 8:14-15 - For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For [the Spirit which] you have now received [is] not a spirit of slavery to put you once more in bondage to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption [the Spirit producing sonship] in [the bliss of] which we cry, Abba (Father)! Father!
- Philippians 4:13 - I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ's sufficiency].