Two people live on the inside of each of us. There's the strong, disciplined, confident you, and there's the weak, insecure, compromising you. There's the gentle, kind, compassionate you, and there's the critical, judgmental, rude you. Most of the time you're kind and patient, but if somebody pushes the right buttons, the hurtful and impatient you comes out. There's a battle constantly taking place between the two yous, which the Scripture calls between the flesh and the spirit, between our old carnal nature and the new redeemed nature.
When you gave your life to Christ, the apostle Paul said, "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away" (2 Corinthians 5:17). The good news is that we are a new creation, but the flesh, even though it's passed away, can get back up. Romans 8:13 says, "If you live by the flesh, you will die." It's not talking about a physical death; rather, it means your dreams will die, your potential will die, your relationships will not be what they should be. If you're always saying what you feel like saying, doing what you feel like, trying to get even, you won't get to where you're supposed to be. It goes on to say, "But if through the Spirit, you mortify the flesh, you will live." To "mortify" means to keep it dead. When it tries to get up, when you're tempted to do whatever you feel, you have to dig your heels in and say, "No, I'm not going to let the flesh rule me." When you do the right thing when it's uncomfortable, you're keeping the old man down.
The Scripture says, "No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but later on it produces a harvest of righteousness" (Hebrews 12:11). It feels good to give in to the temptation to watch something you shouldn't, to gossip about a friend, to be lazy, to tell someone off when they've insulted you. The flesh likes the easy way. But you don't grow when you're always comfortable. The reason some people are stuck is because they're not disciplined to do the right thing when it's hard. You have to be consistent. The flesh is not going to go away. Paul said, "I die daily" (1 Corinthians 15:31). Every day we have to say no to things. "No, I'm not going to watch that. I won't be sarcastic. I'm not going to hang out with that friend who causes me to compromise. I'm not going to eat whatever I feel like."
Now quit telling yourself, "I can't control my temper. I can't break this addiction. I can't lose the weight." Your old man is not that strong. The reason he can control you is because you keep feeding him. Every time you give in to that temptation, become impatient, or get offended, you're feeding and growing the negative. Do yourself a favor—quit feeding the old man. If you'll start to not give in to the temptation, the temper, the bad attitude, you're going to step into a new season of freedom, of growth, of favor.