Proverbs at Work: Bringing Self-Control to Work
"Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control." (Proverbs 25:28)
Self-control is a characteristic of a wise leader. The biblical definition of self-control is “the physical and emotional self-mastery, particularly in situations of intense provocation or temptation.”
Choosing to be self-controlled is a wise choice as those who do not control themselves can leave themselves open to being controlled by others. It is also an important “risk management” tool as speaking and behaving wisely helps prevent regrettable circumstances.
When you think of being self-controlled, what automatically comes to mind? Do you think of some areas in your life which are easy for you to control and other areas which could use some further attention?
If you want to develop more self-control, consider your present status in the following three areas:
Are you able to handle negative feelings such as frustration and anger? When you start to feel an emotional wave of negative emotion, do you take a moment to control the emotion before you say or do something? Can you look back at times when you had said or did something you regret because you did not take time to think before you spoke or reacted? Is this an unusual occurrence for you, or is dealing with these kinds of emotions something you think you could use more self-control over? Learn from these situations, commit to self-control and move forward with God.
"Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly." (Proverbs 14:29)
Are you someone who takes a moment to consider what you are going to say? This is especially important in tense or emotional situations. Although the problem may be a tense one, you can choose to respond wisely. One way to improve this area is to make sure you have the correct information before speaking. Even if others are not careful with what they are saying and how they are saying it, you can choose to communicate respectfully and professionally. Can you think back to a situation when you perhaps spoke too soon, and this caused conflict or a regrettable circumstance? Learn from that situation, commit to self-control and move forward with God.
"The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered." (Proverbs 17:27)
Are you someone who takes time to decide on the best course of action? There are some circumstances and difficult situations when a quick response is required to which we are not referring to here, but rather more the day-to-day cases where decisions are needed. Do you sometimes decide without fully thinking it through? Do you jump at opportunities without looking at the risks and benefits? Are you easily influenced by others and are swayed to do something you later regret? Can you look back and see circumstances where maybe you did something that you should not have? Learn from that situation, commit to self-control and move forward with God.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." (Galatians 5:22-23)
Take Proverbs 25:28 to work with you this week as you consider praying this prayer every morning:
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your Word, which guides us in living wisely. You have said You want us to be self-controlled, an area in which I want to become more mature. Would You please give me the wisdom and strength to have self-control in my emotions, behavior, and words? Please help me see where I need to improve, whether it is to better control unhealthy/negative feelings, unwise behaviors or speech. I desire to honor You in my thoughts, behaviors, and things I say. Over the coming week, please give me the awareness to see where I am falling short and where I can improve. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Have a wonderful week full of self-control in the areas of your emotions, words, and actions.
Bonny, Christian Women at Work