By Dr. Ray Underwood
Here’s a question for you: What is one thing in your life that you are not doing, that if you started doing on a regular basis would make a tremendous positive difference in your life?
Here’s a follow-up question: why are you not doing it?
Answer: most of us are not doing it because we lack discipline.
In ancient times there was once a king named Solomon. The Bible says that he was the wisest man who ever lived. People would come from miles to hear his wisdom and we are fortunate because many of his wisdom is collected in the book of Proverbs in the Old Testament.
In Proverbs 28:25 Solomon says, “A person without self-control is like a house with its doors and windows knocked out.” Discipline is pretty important, huh?
You see this virtue of discipline touches every fiber of our lives. Discipline is the indispensable tool to making your life work: our life, our health, our happiness, our wealth, our family life, our success is all rooted in our discipline. Discipline helps us to get to where we want to go.
You ask any great athlete and they will tell you about the importance of discipline. You ask any successful business man or woman and they will tell you about the importance of discipline. You ask any accomplished musician, actor, writer, salesperson or leader and they will tell you about the importance of discipline.
Spiritually speaking, the same is true: our relationship with God is largely determined by our discipline. You ask any godly man or godly woman and they will tell you about the importance of discipline. Spiritual discipline is the habit of making wise decisions and then living in alignment with them. Our behavior needs to be in alignment with our thinking and that takes discipline.
Prov. 10:17 says, “People who accept discipline are on the pathway to life, but those who ignore correction will go astray.” NLT
Here are three “Disciplines of Being Disciplined”.
1. Persistence – “Never Give Up”
Prov. 12:24 “Work hard and become a leader; be lazy and become a slave.” Discipline always starts from within; we grow and develop our self-discipline by growing and changing our attitude towards it.
2. Advance Decision Making – “Say No Now”
Prov. 13:16 says, “A wise man thinks ahead, a fool doesn’t and even brags about it.” Be prepared in advance to make the right choices. Don’t wait until it’s too late.
3. Delayed Gratification – “Putting Pain before Pleasure”
You do the difficult now in order to enjoy the benefits later. The Apostle Paul reminds us that, “No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening–it is painful! But afterward there will be a quiet harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.” Heb. 12:11 NLT
So… let me ask you: What is one thing in your life that you are not doing, that if you started doing on a regular basis would make a tremendous positive difference in your life?
And why are you not doing it?
Dr. Ray Underwood
Palm Beach Community Church