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Doughnuts and Self-Control

Every morning at 7:20, my mouth waters as I drive past. I can almost smell the flaky pastries and hot lattes. I stare in delicious awe as I pass the familiar bright sign on my way to work. I imagine bins filled with every kind of doughnut: jelly, cream, chocolate, sprinkled, and glazed. Dozens of raisin and blueberry bagels line the display counter as the savory smells greet each customer with liquid energy.

Dunkin’ Donuts is one of my favorite East Coast stops. Whenever I see a Dunkin’, my stomach does little hungry flips. The familiar colors of pink and orange pull me in, reminding me of my childhood in New York. Despite my sugar cravings, I desperately try to avoid going through the drive-thru. Dunkin’ Donuts is a weakness of mine, a temptation that is hard to avoid.

Pastries and hot drinks are the go-to enjoyments that give me temporary happiness. Mouth-watering delicacies and brewed Columbian coffee bring out a whole new level of temptation for me. Although doughnuts seem somewhat harmless, too much of anything can be a dangerous thing. In the case of doughnuts, self-control is something I struggle to acquire.

We all grapple with even the smallest temptations, and a craving for unhealthy foods is mine. When our brain sees something we like, we tend to gravitate toward it. Our senses pick up on sights, sounds, and aromas that appeal to our carnal nature. As humans, we all have a weakness that can deter us from our personal growth or goals. And if we’re not careful, even the most minor temptations can cause damage.

As a child, I remember going to a church function that touched on the theme of the fruits of the spirit. During worship, the teacher would pick children at random and have us line up with a sign. Each paper had a fruit of the spirit spelled out; love, joy, peace, gentleness, and the list went on. With great anticipation, I waited for my name to be called. When my name was the last one chosen, I went on stage in excitement. But to my disappointment, the only sign left to hold was self-control. I remember being disheartened. I wanted one that spelled out love or thankfulness. Why did I get a boring sign?

Looking back, I realize that self-control is one of the most important and challenging fruits of the spirit. Without self-control we give in to the very object that could possibly consume us. No matter the size of temptation, it’s essential to exercise willpower – even if it is food.

“No temptation has overtaken you, except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13, NIV).

God’s promises astonish me! He understands our desires and has given us the ability to develop self-control when needed, even in the case of a jelly doughnut.

Madeleine Lowe writes from Indiana.

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About Madeleine Lowe

Madeleine Lowe

writes from Indiana.

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