While people without Christ can demonstrate self-control, this quality in its fullest expression of character transformation is a part of the spiritual fruit that only the Holy Spirit can produce in us. It’s not long before the world wants to know, “What have you done for me lately?” As leaders with an increasingly eternal perspective, however, we know that our prize will not fade or wear out. First, parents are responsible for the discipline of their children. 7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. How tragic to be ahead on the judges’ scorecards but run out of gas in the end and collapse in defeat. It would be nice to think that all this clears up along with our complexion as we enter adulthood. Take Phil Mickelson. You win this one game, and I will personally buy each of you a brand new pickup truck.”. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Bible Lesson: The Bible often compares our work as Christians to this. 3 The Value of Self-Discipline Living 1 Cor. He was not only clever and cunning, but he was also greedy and dishonest. He is the supreme example of moral restraint. 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. He points out in Colossians 2:23 how futile it is to try to live the Christian life by one’s own power of will. Paul knows exactly why Lebron James spends more than a million dollars on his body: Here’s the point: elite athletes don’t live disciplined lives because they think disciplined lives are virtuous. This momentum is built through a steady obedience – as Eugene Peterson calls it, “a long obedience in the same direction.”4, Inspiration and talent will only carry you so far. But that’s not the case. I will run from community at the first sign of difficulty and shut others out. The man to whom Solomon referred was intentional about choosing his friendships with care, then continued to examine the nature of those friendships. The Search OF the Savior: Why Jesus Came, Part 2 (Gal. “Why haven’t you mentioned her before?” I asked. Like the apostle Paul, we live in an undisciplined time. This is why Christian legalism really doesn’t work. And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built up and planted, and if it does evil in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider the good I had intended for it. Proverbs 13:24 “Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline … 13 “Make level paths for your feet,”[b] so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed. In spite of the spiritual and moral rebellion of his people, the Lord offered to avert the disaster of impending judgment if his people would only repent and return to him. As you read your preferred Bible story, try to bring the story to life for your children. His patience and forbearance are evident throughout the Scriptures and exemplify the essence of perfect self-discipline. 8 John Ortberg, The Life You’ve Always Wanted. from Case Institute of Technology, a Th.M. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The first area, parent responsibility for child discipline… She’d been working on major boundary issues in her therapy and was seeing real progress in resolving responsibility conflicts with her parents, husband, and kids. 7:1-9 13 5 A Self-Disciplined Life is a Mark of Maturity (#2) James 1:21-27 17 6 Dangers to Avoid in Self-Discipline Phil. “Boys,” he began, “when I wore the green and gold, we won nearly every single game. It is not fun to do a whole bunch of push-ups or run a bunch of miles. Plants don’t produce more fruit by trying harder. Why? "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son. Disciplined habits will give you the momentum you need to not only move forward, but also to run your earthly race with strength and purpose. And then, to my surprise, an ad came on where the announcer asked, Would you like to ski like these experts ski? The Bible isn’t silent on this topic either. Many of us can relate to Shakespeare’s tragic character Hamlet in his difficulty determining a course of action. One fall, in the panhandle of Texas, the local high school football team was enduring a terribly embarrassing season. For children (and often adults! No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize. He said, “Preparation through steady practice is the only honest avenue to achieving your potential.” Octavia Butler, in an essay for aspiring writers, says, “First forget inspiration. Now look at you. Even if those people happen to be my kids. This is a volatile combination. We don’t have to be afraid. Connect to the growing family of people using educational stories. We all come to challenges which require bold, decisive action. Yet identifying, erecting and living within those boundaries requires personal understanding and self-discipline, especially when those boundaries have to do with changing our own behavior. 6 Jerry Vines, SpiritFruit. Every kids church ministry deserves the very best resources for teaching God’s Word, even when they don’t have the financial resources. ADDRESS: Ministry-To-Children The race of life is not to be compared with a sprint. People seek freedom through excess, but they find only bondage. We can choose to believe the Bible and do the hard things it requires, or we can choose to live foolishly and suffer the consequences. This is the life of faith, and it grows as we walk in humble obedience. Is honored, respected, admired, praised and rewarded (vv. They live disciplined lives and endure all kinds of self-denial because they want the pleasures of the prize. We can pursue it, but we can take no credit for it. She may be a literal woman, or she may be Wisdom personified. But means involves discipline. Sometimes life is hard. We would spend our time differently. 4 Eugene Peterson, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction. The first, and perhaps most popular story of perseverance that comes to mind, is the epic story of Job. That vision will show us our intention. What the young Prince of Denmark is saying is that he waffles back and forth. This guy works his tail … Mischa Elman, one of the greatest violinists of the twentieth century, was walking through the streets of New York City one afternoon when a tourist approached him. People who demonstrate the fruit of self-control are productive, dependable and influential. How would that affect our business appointments? We believe that God is the loving Father of all kids. Every week, thousands of churches use our Bible lessons, craft ideas, printable resources, and coloring pages to teach kids the Christian faith. Sadly, the prophet could predict with certainty that the people of Judah would stubbornly turn down the Lord’s gracious offer. And whether from a formal or informal position in the organization, that person provides leadership. His lines from the famous “To be or not to be” speech resonate with us: And thus the native hue of resolution The first stage was the infancy stage (from birth to 24 months).A few weeks later, I wrote about the toddler stage (from 18 months to age 3).Today, I'm going to finish this series with some reflections on preschoolers (age 3-5) Week after week, the hometown would show up and cheer to no avail; it was abysmal. In late Spring, I introduced a series of posts where I began to record my reflections on the Bible and early childhood development. We have 200 meters of training for a 400-meter race. We start so well only to end so poorly. Jesus always did the Father’s will, even when it was painful, like when He expressed in the Garden of Gethsemane the desire to have this cup pass from Him, but Jesus said, “Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done” (Luke 22:42). One is Shebna, an Israelite who lived during the time of King Hezekiah, and the other is Graham, a brother in our time. The habits you form will sustain you. NASB. And that is the main clincher: No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Satisfaction guaranteed or your money back! Gets the job done regardless of what it takes, and has the full confidence of others (v. 11). God had prescribed a way of life for His people. Bible truths in story form should be presented in such a way as to: Make the Word of God come alive . Our ability in the U.S.A. to develop increasingly powerful weapons and technology seems to be growing exponentially, but moral accountability and the development of character actually seems to be going in reverse. John Ortberg uses an illustration that may help us understand this better: Consider the difference between piloting a motorboat or a sailboat. That means no permission is needed as long as you credit this Ministry-To-Children.com in the final work. Select one or two props for an object lesson. He is one of the greatest golfers and putters to ever play the game. May 17, 2017. We can run a motorboat all by ourselves. Yet identifying, erecting and living within those boundaries requires personal understanding and self-discipline, especially when those boundaries have to do with changing our own behavior. 12:11 He tells us, for example, “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24). It is a Heavenly reward…when we work to do what the Bible says and stay away from things we know are not healthy, we develop righteousness (goodness), peace, and eventually Heavenly hope. Biblical Punishment and Discipline in Parenting Perhaps one of the best places to look when it comes to the biblical differences between punishment and discipline is Christian parenting. The are idea of self-sacrifice, self-discipline, or self-restraint is hard to come by in this “Age of Ease.” One of the disclosures that came out of Russia in past years is the revelation that Time alone with God in His Word, the Scriptures, is the great necessity of our spiritual lives. Finally, a wealthy oil man could take it no longer. to discuss the simplicity of discipleship.5 Our passion can often reveal to us a vision. Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought, They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, The process by which God's people learned obedience was the “discipline of the Lord” (Deuteronomy 11:2 NIV). Self-discipline is a character trait that helps leaders evaluate what they’re doing, stop doing what’s harmful, and start doing what’s constructive. Bible Stories Related to Self-control David’s refusal to harm Saul (I Samuel 24:1-14) Daniel who purposed ahead of time not to eat the King’s food (Daniel 1) We don’t have to earn it. Copyright © 2007-2020 Ministry-to-Children. Doing so can and will affect other areas of leadership life – how we treat others, where we go for answers to major decisions and the skills we use in accomplishing our daily tasks. And just like we were able to go faster without the extra things slowing us down, when we take off our sins (things we aren’t supposed to do), we can follow God more easily. This kind of self-discipline is challenging because it involves evaluating relationships with other people – some of which are extremely difficult to manage – recognizing their destructive attributes, and then acting to change the nature of the relationship or to cut it off. Because the reward is better than the hardship. Of course not! We need to form borders that will protect us and enable us to develop. What would it look like if we lived as if we believed 2 Timothy 1:7 was a divinely inspired message to us from God? Habit will sustain you, whether you’re inspired or not…. Paul had commissioned Timothy to oversee many of the churches in the Roman province of Asia, and this task required “a spirit of power, of love and self-discipline.” Self-discipline is needed to stretch us beyond our own comfort zones and areas of personal inertia. I have tremendous boundary problems with this woman. Obviously, running without things to hold you back or slow you down. Our task is to do whatever enables us to catch the wind.8. “It is mind-boggling to me that the Almighty power created everything I see; the Bible says that God … With a look at the book of Hebrews, this lesson focuses on the meaning of discipline, and the contrasts between the hardship of discipline and benefits of rewards in Christ. Then the word of the Lord came to me: “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter does?” declares the Lord. In the Bible, discipline is seen as a positive thing: “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, Let’s not deceive ourselves. Without discernment, this can lead us to activities we would never have imagined being engaged in on our own, but as part of a group it becomes acceptable behavior. He holds a B.S. 430 Oak St. Sellersburg, IN 47172, © 2020 Ministry-To-Children.com | Read our, The Fruit of the Spirit (Kid's Club Lesson #1), Joseph Helps During the Famine (Genesis 41:56-42:2) Sunday School Lesson, Bible Lesson: Using Words to Encourage (Proverbs 12), Object Lesson: Different Containers, Same Contents (1 Samuel 16:7) God Looks at the Heart, Children's Sermon: Jesus Raised Lazarus from the Dead (John 11:1-45), Back to School (Sunday School Lesson) Armor of God, “Back to School ” Children’s Sermon (Jesus, the Sin Eraser), “Back to School” Object Lessons (School Supplies Backpack). Such overly introspective inaction drains a person of power. If desired, fashion a necklace out of the medal with string. But over the course of the race they spread out. Discipline. That’s why we never charge for our curriculum or even ask for donations. 5 Dallas Willard, Renovation of the Heart. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. But if we chose to live as if 2 Timothy 1:7 is true, in spite of our feelings, we would do things differently. Here are some ideas you can try: Use toys to act out the story. Scripture tells us, “A righteous man is cautious in friendship, but the way of the wicked leads them astray” (Proverbs 12:26). Timothy evidently found that out, and so can we. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.–Hebrews 12:1-3. Paul’s words to Timothy revealed that this young man probably struggled with it in his ministry. 1. The apostle Paul demonstrated these qualities, and he wanted his coworker Timothy to demonstrate them as well. “Look! That would likely come as a surprise to certain Bible characters who gave thanks to God in memorable ways thousands of years before the Pilgrims arrived in the New World. Key Verse: No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. . In fact, Jesus said “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and t… And she’s spent money of mine and hasn’t paid me back in years.”. 28-31). We have five good rounds in us, but the fight is scheduled for 12 rounds. From that basic understanding of self-discipline we look at an example of a woman who exhibited great self-discipline in her own life, and reaped the rewards of her efforts – the “wife of noble character” described in Proverbs 31:10-31. It's not just a career, it's a calling! A laurel wreath wilts in just a few hours. Read 3 Ways Self-Discipline Is the Key to Unlocking God's Will by Cortni Marrazzo - Christian career and job development advice,tips and help! In 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 he emphasizes that, as followers of Christ, our spiritual lives form the core of our character: Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Solomon warned about the danger of not exercising self-discipline as we examine our close association with others. Our associations are influencing factors in shaping our character, particularly in our youth. But He promises that He will honor us if we stick with Him… The Search OF the Savior: Why Jesus Came, Part 1 (Luke 19:1-10), Bible Storying Series - Teaching The Story Of God Chronologically, Bible Teaching Ideas: The Ten Commandments And Ten Fingers. We need to form borders that will protect us and enable us to develop. King David (2 … Are we willing to live as if the Bible is true in spite of whatever feelings we may have to the contrary? Seven days of hurrah and whoop-de-do will never compensate for lack of discipline, conditioning, practice, coaching, experience and character. 12:6-7 HCSB). We don’t have to view people with suspicion. The Bible provides two important principles for parents concerning the discipline of their children. In Colossians 2 Paul mentions those who worship their own self-will. Now, what if we wanted to further improve time on the obstacle course? And lose the name of action. B. ), the word “discipline” carries a lot of negative connotation. The next question is, “What will that cost?” Finally, we come to the most pertinent question of all, “Are we willing to pay the price in order to get what we say we really, really want?” These questions must be asked from time to time, because we don’t want to come to the end of life and find that we’ve just lived in the heat of the moment with no real intentionality. Then he warns us, “Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared” (Proverbs 22:24). It is not the outward result of self-repression but rather the inward result of the Spirit’s work.6. -Hebrews 12:6-10. from Dallas Theological Seminary, a Ph.D. from ... More, 4. Habit is more dependable. Just put it on, point down the steepest slope you can find, and you will experience the thrill previously known only to Olympic skiers! Get in touch with a big community of readers. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. If it was hard going through the obstacle course, imagine what these sports starts must do in order to train. Only $499! Henry Cloud and John Townsend offer some specific advice regarding how this can be done in their book Boundaries: Sarah heaved a long sigh. Athletes are motivated by audiences, glory, or winning. Because he wanted to have the self-control to finish the race without being disqualified. That story illustrates the need we all have to place boundaries around our lives. Godly leaders need to cultivate this same kind of spiritual fitness. Transformation is the work of God done with our cooperation. Ask for endurance in understanding and accepting hard things in order to grow. Additionally, we read in the Bible that it is good to be patient and to demonstrate self-discipline (Proverbs 16:32) and that lacking self-control makes us vulnerable to harm (Proverbs 25:28). I am preparing a disaster for you and devising a plan against you. It was about a morbid suppression of the desires. 3:12-16 21 7 The Self-Disciplined Life and Holiness Gal. Passage: Hebrews 12:1-24 Habits and practice seem obvious, ordinary, pedestrian; there aren’t many books that deal with this positively. It is an even more critical issue when it comes to living the spiritual life. I’ll let you in on a little secret. And they went out and lost the game 38-0. Lack of adequate training may not show up at first, but enthusiasm and passion will eventually give way to fatigue. How willing are we to live as if the Bible is true, even when our feelings run contrary to what Scripture would have us do? It would never be worn a second day. 9:19-27 9 4 A Self-Disciplined Life is a Mark of Maturity (#1) 1 Cor. Once everyone has done it, invite them to try it again, but this time without holding or wearing anything. Explain that today we are going to talk about hard work, hardship, and holiness…consider, for starters, Olympic athletes. It’s the same with God. The Lord is compassionate, gracious and slow to anger (Numbers 14:18; Psalm 103:8). And think about those athletes. But this is not only detrimental, it is diametrically opposed to our spiritual growth as believers in Christ. Run in such a way as to get the prize. Bible stories. There are two extremes to be avoided: One is total independence, and the other is co-dependence. On the first run-through, have students complete the obstacles while holding several bulky items, or wearing a big coat/skirt. If the wind doesn’t blow – and sometimes it doesn’t – we sit still in the water no matter how frantic we act. Ministry-To-Children.com helps you tell kids about Jesus by providing age-appropriate Bible study material and Sunday School curriculum – all 100% free online. We have only one. I will avoid all conflict, even when I need to confront people. History has repeatedly witnessed the combination of great power without moral restraint, and the results have always been disastrous. 7 Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend, Boundaries. Self-discipline is a gift: "for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control" (2 Timothy 1:7). Encourage kids to think about why parents discipline or set rules. Paul says we are to discipline our selves towards godliness. This is not all fun. Jesus knew that “he who sent me is with me. We need more than passion. So turn from your evil ways, each one of you, and reform your ways and your actions.’ But they will reply, ‘It’s no use. In the Bible, discipline is seen as a positive thing: “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, 6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”. Then why do it? For a lot of years as a mom, I viewed discipline as an unpleasant side effect of parenting because it meant being the bad guy. It's in the Bible, Hebrews 12:5-11, NIV. It’s not from god-given talent. How would that affect how much we eat, drink, sleep, watch television or exercise? Sometimes we do what God tells us and we still struggle. It is HIS divine will that young people come to faith in Jesus Christ and find salvation through the Gospel and the work of the Holy Spirit to bring them to faith. Dr. Boa is the President of Reflections Ministries and Trinity House Publishers. You have come to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect… -Hebrews 12:18; 22-23 Let us pray that we have the grace to run with endurance the race that’s set before us. The wind does the work. What would we have to do in order to become more proficient? That story illustrates the need we all have to place boundaries around our lives. If my sense of worth is tied to other people, I will move toward the extreme of co-dependence. His willingness to endure and to forgive our frequent acts of disobedience is nothing short of amazing. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! Today we start on that study, The Disciplines of a Godly Life. Through the prophet Jeremiah, we see God’s loving forbearance and restraint in action: This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “Go down to the potter’s house, and there I will give you my message.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. Then, have your kids act out the story themselves as you read it once more. These men and women demonstrated the kind of gratitude that pleases God—and perhaps inspires others. Consequences and negative punishments might be likely…hard work and structure are also parts of discipline…We are going to take a look at a Biblical version of this word. Generously participates in the larger community by sharing his or her profits with the needy (v. 20). Those who hold leadership positions find themselves in need of establishing boundaries on a daily basis. New York: Seven Stories Press, 1996, p. 138. If you want to be an effective leader, identify the habits you need to build into your life so you can lead with diligence – habits such as physical fitness, balance between work and home, financial and personal accountability, proactivity in the workplace and the like. You’d give anything to hit a golf ball like me, if it were easy.” Player then listed the things one would have to do in order to achieve his level of play: “You’ve got to get up at five o’clock in the morning, go out and hit a thousand golf balls, walk up to the club house to put a bandage on your hand where it started bleeding, then go and hit another thousand golf balls. That’s when someone who is equally tired and equally afraid steps forward and does what’s needed. Having an overabundance of loose acquaintances without the depth of a quality friendship can be a dangerous thing. We are in control. The necessity of discipline: to deter destruction (v. 4) The writer of Hebrews ends chapter 10 with a … We want to be people who have a genuine sense of calling and purpose. If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned. What do they have to do? We can hoist the sails and steer the rudder, but we are utterly dependent on the wind. We all enjoy putting others down; it makes us feel better about ourselves. 12 Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. He spoke about the “righteous man” who is cautious in friendship. It’s the story of the self discipline that made these individuals a success. As you read through the following list, think about how you can integrate some of her character traits into your own life as a leader. Target Audience: Pre-k through sixth grade (adaptable) Bible verses about Living A Disciplined Life. We can live in freedom. Because of Timothy’s natural inclination to timidity, Paul was prompted to encourage his fellow worker to maintain a holy boldness and assurance in his position of spiritual leadership. But the Bible is clear when it warns, “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character’” (1 Corinthians 15:33). In the Bible, discipline has a positive and essential place in the lives of God's people. We achieve great things by training ourselves. They were so excited about the prospect of driving a truck with that “new car” smell. We have to be motivated. Yet the Bible speaks of self-discipline as a fruit of the Spirit. Through proper training, we form proper habits; we can intentionally choose those habits that are desirable for the formation of character. As we spend time in the disciplines of the spirit, Paul says we’re to be like runners. Materials Needed: Large objects to carry and/or strange things to wear; ribbons or “medals” of a sort; decorative materials; Bibles. They hung a big poster of a truck in the locker room. –Heb. We’re afraid of rejection, so we put up a façade or we compromise our ethics. 131-132. The only reassurance we have is the knowledge that the ultimate power behind all things is also the supreme source of good who demonstrates patience and mercy toward humanity. The first and foremost discipline is the Discipline of the Scriptures. We have an audience as Christians, too, and the example of Jesus to look to: Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. You have not come to a mountain that can be touched and that is burning with fire; to darkness, gloom and storm…But you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. God is dealing with you as sons" (Heb. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him. This person has that elusive quality called self-discipline. His patience is stunning. Writing to the Galatians, Paul said that “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23).