Women’s Newsletter

Volume 6 Issue 4
April 2018
Self-Control: Being Helathy in Mind, Body, and Soul

Article by Rachael Smith

Self-control is essential to being healthy in our mind, body, and soul. But it can easily be twisted into becoming an obsession for control.

Within a week's time I ate a dozen doughnuts. I lost all control. First, I ate doughnuts from Krispy Kreme. Then I had some from a grocery store bakery. After that I fully indulged in several from a local bakery. Then I wrapped it up with a few unexpected ones from Duck Doughnuts. It would have been wrong to pass those up.

If you know me, you know I love doughnuts. I like other desserts, don’t get me wrong; cake, brownies, ice cream…those may tempt me, but I won’t regret not eating them. But to pass up a doughnut takes a lot of… well, self-control. Self-control has been a very prominent theme in my life over the past 6 months. Except for that week that I lost control.

Six months ago I was diagnosed with SIBO (small intestinal bacteria overgrowth). Feel free to look up details if you want, but I will spare you of those for now. This is by no means a serious, life-threatening condition (although it can lead to more serious things if not managed). It is more of a nuisance, but it is a nuisance I would like to be rid of. The problem is how to get rid of it.

There is an antibiotic, but insurance won’t cover it, and it costs $1800. Yikes! There is a back up antibiotic, but insurance won’t cover that one either. And I won’t take the back up to the back up, so that leaves treating it naturally and with diet. This is all fine with me, I much prefer the natural route if at all possible.

The natural route includes a diet low in fermentable foods. This means no sugar, and no wheat. Those are the first to go in just about any diet, so no big surprise there. The surprise is that it also means eliminating onions, garlic, mushrooms, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, avocado, apples, pears, mango, cherries, and about a hundred other of my favorite foods. What the heck was I suppose to eat???

Practicing self-control is exhausting, especially if we try to do it with our own will power. But, hallelujah! We don’t have to do it on our own. It is promised to us. It is a fruit of the Spirit.

For the first time in my life I had to have self-control with my diet. It was overwhelming, but I did it. I planned, I made adjustments, I found replacements, and I did it. For six months. And then… a dozen doughnuts.

So what went wrong?

I became discouraged. Even with eliminating all those things, it wasn’t enough. Symptoms would improve, and then worsen. Therefore, I eliminated more things. Still, I would experience improvement, then worsen. Finally, I said enough; I might as well eat what I want.

Then came the consequences. Not just the the symptoms of SIBO (although those were there too), but the crazy mood swings (my blood didn’t know what to do with all that sugar), and then getting sick (eating sugar lowers your immune system). My body went through the ringer last month.

Now I am back fighting to be healthy in mind, body and soul.


Self-control can easily be twisted into control. We feel powerful (and therefore prideful), knowing that we can exhibit so much control. For the first time in my life I could see why many women are sucked into the destructive world of eating disorders.


We are to take care of our bodies, using them to honor God. We are not to honor our bodies. It is easy to become obsessive with health, always feeling like we have to do more to feel better. After all, the way we feel is always the thing we feel most. We need to be wise, and willing to learn, but be careful to not be consumed.


Practicing self-control is exhausting, especially if we try to do it with our own will power. But, hallelujah! We don’t have to do it on our own. It is promised to us. It is a fruit of the Spirit.

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Galatians 5:22-23, NLT

If we do indeed have the Spirit within us, then we have the ability to live with all those wonderful traits, including self-control.

We all deal with self-control. Maybe it’s with food, maybe it’s with money, maybe it’s thoughts, or emotions. None of us can escape the need for it, or the temptation to twist it into an idol. It is only by the power of the Holy Spirit we can practice self-control in a healthy way.

In what ways do you need the help of the Holy Spirit for self-control?

Rachael Smith is the founder of Oh Lord Help Us, a ministry encouraging women to be who they were created to be. Her study, but God...Where the Story Changes, is a six week study on replacing the lies we have believed with God's truth. She strives to remain calm, cool, and collected despite the chaos. She has yet to accomplish this, but running and Jesus sure do help. Rachael was a member of Valley View with her fiancé and then husband, Jeremy, from 1999 until 2003, when they moved away for their first of many adventures.

Scripture Writing Plan

Sweet Blessings is a blog where you can find scripture writing plans for each month of the year, as well as topical scripture writing plans. Click the Sweet Blessings Button above to visit the blog.

March Scripture Writing Plan

April Happenings

Connect Through Fellowship

Our April gathering will be Thursday, April 19, at 6:30pm at the home of Aleisa Lightle, 3804 Goldstein Lane(40272).

Hearts and Homes is a casual gathering of women each month in the cozy atmosphere of someone's home. Everyone brings a finger food, appetizer or dessert and we share a meal together. If you'd like to connect with other women for fellowship, devotion, and prayer, this is the place!

Connect to God in Prayer

We invite you to join our Women's Prayer Meeting on Saturday, April 14, from 10:00-11:30 am in Room 204 at church.

Do you ever wish you were better at prayer? Each month is a little different, but this is a perfect place to flex your prayer muscles. We take time to bring our personal, church and community needs to God. We also celebrate as God answers prayers. You will be so blessed that you'll bring a friend next month!

Connect Through Study

Living Life Together is so important because others help us fulfill our purpose, grow in our faith, and serve others every day.

Part of our faith@home strategy is to lead all generations in studying God’s Word together. On March 5, we began a Unified Bible Study using the Gospel Project. We invite you to join us on this journey through the Bible by starting or joining a group. Learn more at vvchurch.org/lifegroups/


Leave a Comment