Proverbs 29:18 says, ‘Without revelation people run wild, but one who follows divine instruction will be happy’. Another translation, ‘Where there is no vision, the people cast off restraint.’
Restraint is really good for you! Is it always fun? NO! Does it always FEEL good at the time? NO! Just ask a screaming three year old being held back from a busy road by a parent, or an engaged couple waiting to move in together.
Saying ‘no’, setting boundaries, have restraint is not always a feel good experience, but it is biblical and leads to great satisfaction, blessing, wholeness, favour and health!
Resisting the urge to eat badly and going to the gym instead, will earn you the body and health you want. Honouring God’s word and keeping sex for marriage will reward you with blessing, protection and favour in your marriage. Withholding from buying that outfit you ‘must’ have will reward you with financial freedom from debt and allow you start saving for things that really matter.
Restraint = reward!
Restraint could also be called ‘self-control’, which happens to be a fruit of the Spirit! In other words, when you are walking with the Holy Spirit, self-control should manifest in your life! Restraint should be one of the hallmarks of the Christian life! Which means that the subsequent blessing, health and freedom should also be one of the hallmarks of a Christian life. When the world looks at you, they should see you thriving in the safety and security of restraint! Don’t let the world fool you into believing that true freedom is following your feelings. That’s not freedom. Quite the opposite in fact – you are a slave to your feelings and wants.
So how do you practice restraint according to proverbs? You get a vision. Get a God-given goal for your relationships, finances, health, and job. When a vision from God is propelling you forward, it is easy to say no to anything that is not in line with that vision – you know what you want, you know what you are running towards!
A daily devotion for a better way of living.