You know, we live in a society today, where we’ve been taught that it is okay for our human emotions to get the best of us and control how we operate in or react to certain situations. We cannot deny the fact, we are all guilty of allowing our emotions to get the best of us from time to time (at least, I am!). However, I was recently reminded of something which I thought would be beneficial to you too.
Contrary to popular belief, self-control should be the default. Hear me out, as I share, in my view, the difference between self-control and human emotions. I see it like this, many talk about one area and are somewhat afraid to talk about the other area. That area my friend, can sometimes be the one that persons struggle with the most.
A look at key terms
So, let us look at some definitions. Firstly, self- control: This can be defined as,
“The ability to control oneself, one's emotions and desires, especially in difficult situations.” (Dictonary.com)
Secondly, human emotions: can be defined as, “A feeling such as happiness, love, fear, anger and hatred. Which can be caused by the situation you are in or the people you are with.” (Collins Co-build Advanced Dictionary)
Self-control, most of us know, comprise a part of the fruit of the Spirit, as mentioned in the book of Galatians. “But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such thing there is no law.” (Galatians chapter 5, verses 22 - 23)
On the other hand, one scripture that speaks about human emotions is found in Proverbs chapter 3, “Trust in the lord with all thine heart; and lean not to thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct our paths.” (Proverbs chapter 3, verses 5 -6)
Upon reflection, based on the definition given by the dictionary quoted above, there is indeed a similarity where both definitions, speak to emotions. However, the difference in my view is that one is speaking about ‘the ability to control’ feelings while, the other is speaking directly to the feeling and it’s causes.
All in all, today's society paints a perspective that it is okay for us to allow our feelings to take charge of us because we are human beings, I hate to tell you but, it is not to be like that. Unfortunately, because a topic of this nature I believe is not dealt with often in depth as a result, many are not able to grasp it.
Although I was trying not to act as if I am teaching a class of students, I believe my analogies and definitions were able to help at least one reader to understand what I was explaining. Self-control is a fruit of the spirit as explained in Galatians while in the general dictionary it is an ability to control oneself, emotions and desires in a difficult situation; whereas human feelings may be triggered by the environment, or the people therein.
The Word of God tells us that we ought not to lean on our own understanding but rather rely on God for the direction. Therefore, whilst it’s important to express emotions- because God made them, and they are valuable, we should not allow them controlling us to become a habit.
Richelle Henry is a blogger and writer, residing in beautiful Jamaica and through her experiences living with Cerebral Palsy has been using her gift of writing to encourage and inspire others as well as to advocate for persons with disabilities. Visit blog at https://richellethenry.wordpress.com/