Manage Myself

As you know, I’m reading a book about wisdom and the importance of asking God continually for wisdom in my life.


I read a quote in that book that that struck a chord with me. “We so often hear, I wish I knew how to manage my time better. Rarely do we hear, I wish I knew how to manage myself better.”[i] Yes, I believe that really is the issue.

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You see, when I allow myself to daydream, or chat a tad-bit extra with a friend, or spend a too much time watching television to name a few, I do run out of the time I have available to complete the tasks given to me. It may seem like I’ve mismanaged my time, but in fact I’ve mismanaged myself.


As you may know, God has quite a bit to say about managing ourselves, so let’s take a look at some of these principles.


First, we must realize that we are not our own. When we make Jesus our personal Savior and give Him our lives, He then becomes the Lord over every aspect of my life. In reality, I’m laying down my life over and over again for Him to use for His purpose.


We sang a song on Sunday morning called “Lay Me Down,” by Chris Tomlin. It really says what we must do. Allow God’s will and His way to rule our lives. Give up our pride, our rights, with hearts open wide and ask God to use us. That’s what it’s all about.


We must also realize that we cannot do this on our own. God’s Spirit is within us to help us on this journey. And what a journey it is when we fully allow God’s Spirit to join us.


Then it’s time to start the real work. Finding the areas of my life that aren’t up to God’s standards. If you need help with this, there are plenty of places in Scripture to find sinful acts. Let’s just look at one of them.


In Ephesians 4 and 5, Paul shares some unbeliever-like behaviors that should be removed from our lives so that God’s Spirit has more control over our lives. Here is what Paul has to say.


Put off falsehood – Ephesians 4:25

Don’t sin in your anger – Ephesians 4:26

Steal no longer – Ephesians 4:28

Get rid of unwholesome talk – Ephesians 4:29

Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit – Ephesians 4:30

Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, brawling, slander and every form of malice – Ephesians 4:31

No hint of sexual immorality – Ephesians 5:3

No obscenities, foolish talk or coarse joking – Ephesians 5:4

Idolatry – Ephesians 5:5


That’s quite a list! And that’s just the beginning. There are plenty of other sinful behaviors that we should consider removing from our lives.


Now once we’ve determined which behaviors to remove, what are we to do? Ask God’s Spirit to help in the process. We must be determined to have the self-control to do so. How blessed we are that self-control is a fruit of God’s Spirit. He is there to help us along this journey.


When there is a void in our lives, we must fill it. If we don’t fill these voids of removed behaviors with something positive, it will likely be filled with another undesirable behavior. So what else can we learn from Ephesians 4?


Speak words that are helpful and edifying – Ephesians 4:29

Be kind – Ephesians 4:32

Be compassionate – Ephesians 4:32

Forgive one another – Ephesians 4:32

Be imitators of God – Ephesians 5:1

Filled with thanksgiving – Ephesians 5:4


These are just a few areas where we need help managing ourselves. I’m so thankful for God’s Spirit to help along the way. To lead and guide. To spur and reign me in. To convict and encourage. However, it’s up to me to make the decision to follow His urgings. That’s where I get to manage myself.


I pray that your day is filled with opportunities for you. I pray that you too will be open to the Holy Spirit today to help you with managing yourself. I intend to listen intently!


Grace and peace be yours in abundance,



[i] Edward R. Dayton ad Ted W. Engstrom, Strategy for Living (Glendale, CA: G/L Publications, 1978), p. 175.

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