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Have you ever day dreamed about becoming a millionaire? In 2013, 17 year old Jane Parks won £1 million in the Euromillions lottery. With her winnings she bought a house, a purple Range Rover and a pet Chihuahua. She enjoyed holidays in the Maldives and did plastic surgery among other things. For her, life became easier; not having to worry about money. However, after four years, she decided to sue the lottery company for negligence. She felt they should not have allowed someone at a young age to enter for such a big prize draw. She claimed that her sudden acquisition of wealth had ruined her life. She thought that winning the lottery would be great, but now she is stressed and has lost her purpose in life. Now she has material things but her life is empty and filled with regret.

Jane’s situation is not unique. We’ve heard of many lottery winners who lost all their money almost overnight. Many people feel this could never happen to them, but everyone has desires. We all want the best things in life without having to struggle for anything. But the problem is not because we have desires. The problem is, not having self-control. When people whose hearts are not disciplined suddenly acquire great possessions, they are highly likely to become controlled by their desires. Rather than happily enjoying an easy life, their actions lead them into difficulties and unhappiness. That is because their ability to control themselves is weaker than their desires. Trusting themselves, they are unable to think twice about their actions.

It is important that we learn to think deeply and discipline our hearts from a young age. We must be trained to do things we don’t want to do and restrain ourselves from what we want to do. That’s why it is necessary for children to be told “No” so they can develop the ability to restrain themselves. Many people only like foods that are sweet. They do not like anything that has a bitter taste and some don’t like vegetables – but the health benefits are numerous. Therefore, our taste buds must be trained so we can have a healthy balanced diet. There is nothing wrong with having desires, but like a car, we need a braking system; something that is able to provide restraint. That is self-control.

What would you do if you suddenly became a millionaire? Could you exercise self-control?

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