Christmas is a time of indulgence, and often we eat, drink and spend money in excess. There is nothing wrong with treats and festivity, but as we consider daily disciplines, we do need to reflect on living wisely, which at times means saying ‘no’ to that umpteenth chocolate or glass of wine.

Far more important than food and drink, however, is the need for daily discipline in our attitudes to sin and God. Often, we shrug our shoulders at wrongdoing. It’s a ‘little white lie.’ It’s ‘no big deal.’ We lose our tempers over nothing and don’t feel any regret at the hurt we cause. We rationalise our behaviour and make excuses for ourselves while ranting over the insensitivity and rudeness of others.

God wants us to live righteous, holy lives 365 days a year. In Titus 2:11-13, we read, For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.’ This is how we need to live all year round.