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A lot of things in life do not seem fair. For example, why does everything that tastes good seem to make you gain weight? My wife has no problems cutting up a cucumber, putting some salt and pepper on it and presenting it to me for a snack. But after a difficult day at work, does anyone really think I want cucumbers? Hand me a Mountain Dew with some Oreos, the ones with double icing. Now that’s what I’m talking about!

Debbie is one of the most disciplined people I know. She has strong willpower. She orders from the healthy section of the menu. I start with the appetizers, move toward the fried section of the menu, and must scan the dessert page thoroughly before making a final decision. She orders water with lemon; but not me! I’m into Shirley Temples or Roy Rogers, the kind of soft drinks with caffeine and sugar.

I read recently that 36,000 plus people in Japan are centenarians. By 2050, the number of people living to be 100 will be over 1 million. Maybe I should move to Japan—I wonder if they have Mountain Dew and Oreos over there? I read where they are starting Cane-Fu classes, not Kung-Fu. They are teaching people in their senior years how to exercise and practice self-defense with their canes. I’m waiting for someone to start one with golf clubs!

Practicing discipline in our lives presents many challenges. Holding our thoughts and words in check, guarding our hearts so we don’t become wounded or offended, practicing moderation and recognizing that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit all are responses that reflect increasing maturity as we walk with the Lord! I’m getting there, but it’s taking me a while. Debbie’s influence is starting to have some positive effect. I ate the celery slices she put in front of me this week—then finished it off later with some Breyers vanilla bean ice cream and some hot fudge.

All kidding aside, if your life is an open book before the Lord, then you’re immediately aware when He begins to press in on those areas that are liabilities, the ones the enemy of our soul assaults. Join with me in a renewed effort to strengthen the walls of defense surrounding our hearts, souls, bodies and our minds! We’ll be glad we did and the quality of our lives and those around us will be greatly enhanced!

“‘Everything is permissible for me’—but not everything is beneficial. ‘Everything is permissible for me’—but I will not be mastered by anything.” -1 Corinthians 6:12 (NIV)

By: Glenn Burris Jr., general supervisor

served as the president of The Foursquare Church from 2009-2020.