I have identified 26 different character traits that I can work on growing in my soul. They are all important but several are super important because without them none of the others would exist in us let alone grow. Endurance as I wrote about several weeks ago is numero uno as far as I understand the Bible and right next to endurance is Self-Control, though at times I will switch them around. They are very related and one without the other is impossible. Our three enemies are Satan and his demons, the world and all the stuff that is in it, and our own flesh. Without self-Control those three enemies will win every time. We need self-control to control what we speak out of our mouth, the New Testament book of James says if we can control our tongue we are a perfect person. We need to control our thinking and grow to the place that we are consistently taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. We need to control our emotions, especially our anger. There are a dozen more things that each of us needs to grow in exercising self control over, but it is very difficult and so slow.
Self-control is like a muscle, it can be very strong or it can be very flabby. We grow strong in self-control by exercising that muscle until we are strong enough to whip all of our enemies at once! One of the most effective weight training regimens to becoming super strong as a disciple of Jesus is reading your Bible everyday. Our flesh hates reading the Bible, and when we choose to keep our goal and commitment of reading the Bible everyday even when we are sleepy, tired, busy, whatever self- control grows rapidly.