When we pray through the fruit of Self-Control, we often end up where Augustine (a pastor in the early church) ended up:
“I had been extremely miserable in adolescence, miserable from its very onset, and as I prayed to you for the gift of chastity I had even pleaded, “Grant me chastity and self-control, but please not yet.” I was afraid that you might hear me immediately and heal me forthwith of the morbid lust which I was more anxious to satisfy than to snuff out.”
While Augustine was pretty up-front with his "…not yet" request, our "not yet"s often remain submerged below the waterline of our consciousness. Understanding what self-control looks like (in our rational minds) and having the desire to enact self-control are different experiences. As you pray today, ask God to shape your desire for the fruit of self-control – ask God to turn your "not yet" into "your kingdom come."
About the Author
Isaac Gaff is the Managing Director of Worship and Creative Arts at Calvary UMC