“Love is displayed through a heart of compassion. Selfless love is showcased through the greatest acts of charity!” No wonder God says it’s all about the condition of our heart (1 Samuel 16:7) although we might not fully comprehend how deceitful our heart truly is, God does for “the heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; Who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9).
Let’s ask Him to give us a heart of compassion for the hurting and those who are hurt.
Let’s determine we will produce good fruit – joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22).
A good crop brings in ALL of the above.
I believe the most important one from the list is self-control.
Let’s discuss this further.
Angry people have no self-control. They are like a wild fire, uncontainable, destroying all in their path. Self-gratification is the same; again they are unable to use self-control, unable to deny themselves of destructive desires, and since they are also unfaithful, they can’t be faithful to anyone or anything. They are without self-control. They are impatient and must control everything on their own timetable. No matter what they must have it now, unable to control themselves. Do you see my point in just these few examples? These fruits are completely opposite of the fruit of the Spirit which we should be exhibiting. All this chaos is due to the inability to exercise self-control.
Let us not deceive ourselves in believing we possess anything without seeing any actions. Love comes forth from a heart of compassion. Love is an action word. Compassion is then put into action. Love and compassion are two verbs that together brings forth powerhouses.
What are powerhouses? They represent lives lived out as Jesus did. He had compassion and love for people. So He loved them, healed them, and most importantly saved them.
Self-control might be the last on the list but so very vital to exhibiting the rest, fully understanding the greatest of all is love. Self-centered people have no love and no self-control.
In what areas do you need to practice self-control? Take inventory of yourself. Determine to allow the Spirit in you to control your every thought, desire, and motivation. When you allow the Spirit of God to have His way in your life, you’re relinquishing your self-righteousness and allowing Him to control you. Get it? Let go of self righteousness. I promise you it’s so much better.
Let’s love people regardless of color, religion, sex, or cultures. Christians are commanded to love. We don’t condone sin, but we love the sinner. We all sin and come short. We cannot judge anyone. We judge the fruit only. We can speak about sins, but we cannot condemn anyone. Only God has the right to condemn.
We judge fruit and only fruit.
We use self-control when we want to go where God says, “No,” or like appointing ourselves as judges when God says we are not to judge people. Therefore, we relinquish authority we just gave ourselves, and we exercise self-control. We stop dead in our track with our negative thoughts, spoken words, and evil attitudes. We simply change them. It’s easy really. Remember we can have and exercise self-control. It’s part of the fruit of the Spirit. Self-control is last mentioned but very powerful nevertheless.
As I started with this statement, I will end with it. Let us remember always the following: “Love is displayed through a heart of compassion. Selfless love is showcased through the greatest acts of charity!”
Teresa Allissa Citro
Founder and President, Thread of Hope, Inc.