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Honey, Pepperoni, and Self Control - Lesson From Proverbs 25

Posted by Douglas Twitchell on Apr 1, 2006
When my nephew Daniel was much younger (he just turned fifteen this year!), he used to love pepperoni. And he didn't just love it on pizza. Oh no. If he had the chance, he'd chow down on slices of pepperoni straight out of the package. In fact, he used to get up early in the morning, before anyone else was awake, find the package of pepperoni, and just eat and eat and eat.
Until one time, he ate so much he made himself sick. You can probably guess the end result of that; Daniel doesn't eat pepperoni any more. At his fifteenth birthday party we had pizza, and there was a choice between pepperoni pizza and plain cheese pizza.

Daniel went for plain cheese. "Don't you like pepperoni?" I asked.

"No!" was his emphatic answer.

That very brief discussion reminded me of a verse in the Book of Proverbs:

Proverbs 25:16 Have you found honey? Eat only what you need, that you not have it in excess and vomit it.

Of course, being a proverb, that instruction isn't really about honey. It's about self-control, and knowing when "enough is enough". It's about recognizing when you've had enough of something, and being able to stop.

And it's not just about food. It's about any activity that we engage in. Reading books, watching TV, playing video games, talking on the telephone, exercising, working, etc. These things are not bad in themselves - in fact, some of them are quite good - but they become bad when we do not have the wisdom and restraint to say, "That's enough now."

The very next verse in Proverbs states:

Proverbs 25:17 Let your foot rarely be in your neighbor's house, or he will become weary of you and hate you.

Does that mean visiting your neighbor is a bad thing? No! A visit to your neighbor is a good thing! But a wise person will know when they have outstayed their welcome, and leave before that happens.

Do you know when enough is enough? Do you have the self-control needed to say That's enough for now?

Where to Go from Here...

Read more: Self Control, Wisdom
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