THE POWER OF SELF CONTROL

Homily for November 8, 2016. Tuesday of the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time.

By Fr. Abu

Bible Study: Titus 2, 1 to 14 and Luke 17, 7 to 10.

One of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is Self-Control. Without Self-Control, it is impossible to obey the commandments of God. To have Self-control is living a control switch. Imagine a car without brakes or a tap without a knob. That is how we are without self-control.

In his letter to Bishop Titus, St. Paul exhorts him on how to instruct the church. He says:

“Older men should be temperate, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, love, and endurance. Similarly, older women should be reverent in their behavior, not slanderers, not addicted to drink, teaching what is good, so that they may train younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, chaste, good homemakers, under the control of their husbands, so that the word of God may not be discredited. Urge the younger men, similarly, to control themselves, showing yourself as a model of good deeds in every respect, with integrity in your teaching, dignity, and sound speech.”

Do you notice how the word “Self-Control” repeats itself in this exhortation?

Jesus gave a parable in today’s Gospel passage to drive home the point that we should always see ourselves as humble servants simply doing our part. God is our master, it is left for him to reward us according to his will. Like servants we are not entitled to anything by right.

Whenever you catch yourself complaining about anything, it means you have forgotten you really do not deserve anything. We are mere humble servants, so it is not for us to complain like the Israelites who cried for bread, for water and for meat while they journey to the Promised Land. It takes self-control to restrain oneself from complaining. It takes self-control to free yourself from an entitlement mentality.

Hear what others have said about self-control.

“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.” ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations.

“Never respond to an angry person with a fiery comeback, even if he deserves it…Don’t allow his anger to become your anger.” ― Bohdi Sanders, Warrior Wisdom: Ageless Wisdom for the Modern Warrior.

“If you conquer yourself, then you conquer the world” ― Paulo Coelho, Aleph.

“He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.” ― Lao Tzu.

“Ultimately, the only power to which man should aspire is that which he exercises over himself.” ― Elie Wiesel.

Let us pray: Lord Jesus, show me my control switches. Amen.

Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you.

 

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