Gal 5: 22-23
But the fruit of the Spirit [the result of His presence within us] is love [unselfish concern for others], joy, [inner] peace, patience [not the ability to wait, but how we act while waiting], kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.
In Peter’s second letter to the church at large, he instructs us to add certain things to our faith. He continues that anyone who lacks these things is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins [2 Pet. 1: 5-9]. Not surprisingly, self-control is on this list. If we believe Peter, then we accept that a lack of self-control indicates that we need to be reminded of the condition from which Christ has saved us.
It makes sense that one who has placed his sanctification at the bottom of his priority list would lack self-control when it is the Holy Spirit that would produce this fruit in him. The state and health of our Christian walk are integral to the development of self-control. When we stray and keep the Holy Spirit waiting instead of entertaining His good work, we then fall into the traps set before us. When we allow the Holy Spirit to work in us and avail ourselves of sanctification, the fruit of the Spirit causes us to walk in a controlled manner.
When the battle of temptation begins, focus not on the temptation to sin but on the Holy Spirit’s power to overcome it. Be conscious of where you place your attention. Pray, praise, read the word, or speak with an encouraging brother or sister. Remember that you have been cleansed from your past sins and rely on the Holy Spirit to empower you with the control He imparts. Father God, please continue to instill in us that the beginning of self-control is constant communion with You.