Discipline is a very important trait to have, and many Americans today disregard it. We do what we want, when we want it, how we want it, with little care of how it changes our lives–and the lives of those around us. We don’t care for discipline because it limits us. This is incorrect. This mindset is why we have so many ‘adults’ acting like selfish, greedy fools.
He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls. – Proverbs 25:28
Discipline is important for everyone, but not everyone practices it. If you work a job, it takes discipline to go every day, do your best, and be honest with your fellow employees. If you are in school, it takes discipline to do your best, not cheat, and keep going till graduation. If you’re an artist, it takes discipline to write/draw/sing on the days you really don’t want to.
Truthfully, humans aren’t created to give things their 100% at all times. We need rest, breaks, and sometimes, reminders to why we do things. Not everyone wants to go the narrow, hard road, when the easy, comforting road seems just as satisfying. But this should be the difference between Believers and people who don’t believe in God–we should be an example of how important discipline is. What do I mean? I mean, when someone sees you, do they see a lazy slacker just like the rest of America, or will they see someone who is steadfast and determined? Discipline isn’t easy to obtain or practice, but what is worth having, is not easy.
Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world… – Titus 2:12
For example (and there are SO many examples, just look around in your life!), if you’re an author, you know how much perseverance it takes to write a novel. Edit a novel. Edit it again. Send it to betas. Edit more. Find a cover, formatter, set up a blog tour. Publish it. And then market it. I mean, writing isn’t easy. I, for one, am glad it isn’t, because nothing meaningful is easy. It takes a writer discipline to write when we don’t feel like it, to ponder beta feedback even if we don’t care much for the opinions, and to market our books when we feel like marketing is even harder than writing 60,000 words in 30 days. But we do it. Why?
Because working hard for the glory of Christ is worth the blood, sweat, and tears this life will hold. Because standing strong in the Lord’s commandments (one being discipline, yo!) is worth more to us than sitting around and getting into trouble with the mainstream crowds. And this mindset doesn’t end with writers–it is for every person who works their best at their job when their boss is a wreck. It is for every student who pushes through subjects and does their best when other students slack off or focus on fleshly desires. It is for everyone who exercises discipline, even in ‘small’ forms, like making your bed if you’re not feeling well at all, or making your family breakfast when you’d rather be doing something else, or getting in your work-out when you just wanna binge Netflix. Guess what? Every little discipline act matters!
The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat. – Proverbs 13:4
Everyone has fleshly desires! Discipline is the decision to do what is best, not what feels good or is easy. And guess what? It hurts. It sucks. But it will pay off. And the reward will be better than anything you could imagine. So don’t give up, don’t lose faith, and don’t doubt the power of God’s will. As long as we are steadfast in doing as He wills, we will be rewarded.
Be ye strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be rewarded. – 2 Chronicles 15:7
And another thing about discipline? It often looks like the slackers are getting the world handed to them on a gold platter, but remember that this world, and all the material possessions, glamour, and fame… means nothing. If someone is cheating at school, God sees it. If someone messed up at work and you get the fall, God sees it. Don’t despise evildoers–and since this, too, is easy to do, it takes discipline to make ourselves focus on Heavenly riches.
Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. – Psalms 37:1
As we grow in Christ and continue to live, discipline won’t always (or ever) be easy. But have faith. Have faith that God will keep His promises, and we will be rewarded for doing as He bids us to. When we are tempted to give in to fleshly desires, remember the reward in Heaven.