Thursday, January 26, 2012

self control: rub shoulders

Today is my 43rd birthday.  Woohoo!  I love the attention and presents and cake.  Very childish I know.  Maybe in my 50s I’ll be more mature about it.  But probably not.

I reflect deeply on my birthdays about who I am and who I have yet to be.  I always imagine writing notes to a few dozen people who have contributed richly to who I have become, although I'm too lazy to actually do it.

As I write about self control, I think of my friend who started using cash a few years ago.  I watched her pull out her cash envelopes for a year and finally became so intrigued that I asked her to help me use that system.  If it weren’t for her, Matt and I wouldn’t have the control over our money that we have now.

I think of the friend who, in frustration, said, “You don’t listen!!”  And the painful truth of those words got me started trying to listen better when people are talking to me.  (You may think I still stink at this, but I’ve come a long way!)

I think of several people in my life who are very kind and gracious.  When I make a snap judgment about a person or a situation, they gently offer a deeper perspective.  Because of them I’ve grown a bit (maybe a very little bit) in controlling criticism and offering grace instead.

Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

The self control of others is slowly rubbing off on me, and I hope the measure of self control I’ve gained will rub off on you.  We desperately need to learn from each other.

So to all of you whom God has used to sharpen my self control, thank you so much.  I can’t wait to rub shoulders with you in my 43rd year of life.   

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