Bearing Fruit in the Fall: 3 Ideas for Exhibiting Self-Control in Your Life and Family

Self-control is displayed when we show discipline in our emotions, words and actions. It provides a protection for ourselves and others as we follow God’s commands.

Consider these 3 ideas for exhibiting goodness in your life and your family. For more info on Bearing Fruit in the Fall, check out Faith@Home!


Couples

BEST USE

A date night discussion to navigate the challenges of self-control

ADVANCE PREP

A Bible, pen and a piece of paper

STEP ONE

Read 2 Timothy 1:7 and discuss what is available to us because of what God has given us.

STEP TWO

Read James 1:19. This passage gives us a clear picture of self-control with our emotions and our mouths. Discuss the three essential elements to self-control.

STEP THREE

Discuss what might change in your home if you were more intentional about self-control following the guidelines in James 1:19. Some examples might include…

  • We will not yell at each other or the kids.
  • We will not watch as much television.
  • We will be quick to listen.
  • We will take a five-second pause before responding during a conflict.
  • Each strive to be the first to apologize and quick to forgive.

STEP FOUR

Pray together and ask God to give each of you the grace to develop more self-control.


Parents and Kids

BEST USE

A family time activity to talk about self-control and making right choices

ADVANCE PREP

Open area for playing a game, and a Bible

STEP ONE

Read Proverbs 25:28, “Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control.” Explain how ancient cities needed walls for protection. If the walls were broken down, it meant that the city could be in danger. In the same way, when we lack self-control we put ourselves in danger.

STEP TWO

Play a game of “Simon Says.” Talk about how it is important to try and have self-control when responding to the words of others. Coach them to use a three-step process with the words “Pause, Think, Act.” You can add motions to go along with the words as follows…

  • Pause: Arm extended with hand out flat like a traffic officer
  • Think: Finger pointed to the head
  • Act: Dramatic walking motion

STEP THREE

Allow each family member to share one area with which they would like God’s help when it comes to self-control. It can be as simple as biting nails, limiting video game or mobile device time, not yelling, hitting, grabbing, etc.

STEP FOUR

Ask God to help each member of your family be more self-controlled in the areas mentioned.

OPTIONAL

Consider checking back in with each other throughout the week. Celebrate times you catch each other using self-control; especially in the areas mentioned above.


Parents with Teens

BEST USE

An activity for a parent and teen used to discover and understand self-control from a Biblical perspective

ADVANCE PREP

A computer or device to show an online video

STEP ONE

Today we are going to consider the fruit of the Spirit – self-control. Search online to watch the video, “Marshmallow Test.”

STEP TWO

Each person describe what they think they would have done as a child in the same situation.

STEP THREE

How about today? What if it was your phone sitting on the table and you kept getting notifications of new text messages or updates from Facebook or Instagram? Could you resist? What if you had to avoid looking at your phone for the next two hours, two days or even two weeks? No video games for a week? No chocolate or dessert or fast food for a month? Each person share one or two areas in which they find self-control difficult such as food, money, use of time, relationships, temptations, etc.

STEP FOUR

Read Proverbs 25:28. How is the person without self-control described? When we develop self-control in the areas mentioned above, we become like a protected city.

STEP FIVE

Read 1 Corinthians 10:13. According to this verse, how does God help us when it comes to self-control during temptation?

STEP SIX

Have one person pray that God would help each person with self-control this coming week.

David Barrett