What Momma Never Told You

Discipline is interesting. We become inundated with the concept as children; all too often with a negative connotation. If you skip chores you’re disciplined, if you start a food fight during dinner you’re disciplined, if you make a farting noise in public…I think you get the idea. To a child discipline can mean a number of things, but I assure you, none of them are pleasant. In my experience it refers to scolding, spanking, or grounding; to be honest, I try and keep my distance from all three.

We’ve been conditioned to see half of the picture, focusing intently on the negative. But, when we open our eyes, we see a whole new side of discipline. And it’s good! I define it as the ability to resist temptation. Being such, it helps us accomplish goals, live life in a productive manner, and obtain the thing we are all searching for…Happiness.

There are many forms of discipline, but for the purposes of this article we will narrow in on four categories.

  1. Discipline of the Body- This comes through physical exercise. I’ve heard it said “I buffet my body, and make it my slave”. This is a command to follow! We must become the master of our physical body; meaning we are in command. Once control is ours, the ability to become stronger, push through plateaus in the gym, and keep moving even when it’s uncomfortable will become second nature. You will then OWN your physical fitness.
  2. Discipline of the mind- In my opinion, this is one of the hardest things to master. The mind is complex; any man able to tame it has certainly found his way to success. We discipline the mind through habit formation; whether it’s nutritional change, or the end of your smoking career, habits are necessary to create successful long term transformation.
  3. Discipline of emotion- Comes after you’ve been knocked down in life. When you’ve gone from the beauty of a mountain top into the low of the valley. Whether it’s a failed diet, or a lost job, the discipline of emotion is needed to stand back up. As Steven Covey says, humans are given the ability to determine their reaction to all circumstances. It is only through the discipline of emotion that we are able to choose the correct responses no matter the situation. And don’t forget, character is formed as you walk through the valley.
  4. Discipline of the Spirit- Truly one of the most fundamental concepts of our existence; this discipline trumps all others. There are three tiers within the broader spectrum of spiritual discipline: Faith in self, Faith in others, Faith in the future
    1. Faith in self springs forth from the ability to see the infinite potential lying within you. It is the belief you’re able to accomplish the things you were placed on this earth to do. If you just started thinking “That is a bunch of motivational mumbo jumbo” I can confidently say; you’re lacking faith in self.
    2. Faith in others piggy backs off faith in self. If you are not able to see the potential lying in you, how do you expect to see it in others? A very wise man once said, “Love your neighbor as you love yourself”, but if I am unable to love myself, its certain I am unable to love my neighbor. Faith in others requires discipline because it demands love. In order to have faith, I must trust, if I am to trust, I must first love. And we mustn’t forget love is patient and kind, it is not jealous, angry or self seeking; in other words, love takes discipline.
    3. Faith in the future is the belief tomorrow will be better than today, the next moment will be better than the last, and the best is yet to come! This type of faith can be summed up in one word; Hope. Hope is fuel to our spirits, it picks us up when we’re down, and keeps us moving when we swear we’ve given it all. Hope in the future leads to the ultimate type of Faith. The Faith that transforms lives.

What type of disciple do you need? 

We are all in different places, but one thing is for sure; everyone has work to do.

How much longer will you wait to demand discipline from yourself?

Fitness Will Be Greater.

~Brad Jarrett


Works Cited

NIV Bible. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2007. Print.