Do you remember when you were a kid and your bicycle handlebars got messed up? Your front tire would be pointing one way, while your handlebars pointed in a different direction. Fortunately, a well-placed crescent wrench and a steady hand could tighten things back into alignment.
A lack of self-control is similar to having bent handlebars. Everything is out of alignment. No matter how hard you try, the direction you are taking will always get you into trouble. A person without self-control is out of control and cannot come under God’s control.
Fortunately, the handlebars of our lives are never permanently bent out of shape. The well-placed redemptive power of God and His steady hand can always bring us back into alignment. The power of His Holy Spirit can prevent loose or bent handlebars through the practical fruit of self-control.
I remember when one of my parent's 4-wheelers got bent out of shape on their ranch in a minor accident. The handlebars and front tires were permanently out of alignment. In order to drive straight, you had to turn the handlebars right. In order to drive left, you had to turn the handlebars straight. What a mess! It was not a surprise when that particular 4-wheeler only got into more accidents!
A lack of self-control generally results in compounding more permanent problems. While listed last, self-control is the key to releasing all of the other 8 fruits of the Spirit. When self-control is not carefully developed and practiced, more unpleasant controls and consequences often result. Thanks be to God that the consequences of sin are not permanent with God! He is a miraculous mechanic always available and able to repair any mess we find ourselves in.
This summer, as we put down the remote control, may we focus on developing self-control with our children. God is eager to release new challenges and new fruit in the lives of His disciples. We must first give God permission to govern our lives through the power of His Spirit. A surrendered life, fully under God’s control, provides the most eternal and fulfilling freedom possible