And when Moses saw that the people were naked; for Aaron had made them naked unto their shame among their enemies." (Exodus 32:25)
The children of Israel were out of control, and were a laughingstock to their enemies. Anytime we are out of control, we are opening ourselves up to ridicule, harassment, and shame. We have to take control of all things: our emotions, thoughts, feelings, words, beliefs, whims, moods, expectations of others; when we are able to rule our own spirit, we have the victory. Having discipline and self-control gives us power, more power than a mighty conqueror.
He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that rules his spirit than he that takes a city. (Proverbs 16:32)
When we have the discipline and self-control to do what we know we should, we experience true victory. When we do NOT exercise self-discipline, our lives very quickly become out of control. (Eating, shopping, sex, television watching, gossiping and backbiting, just to name a few). We then suffer from a load of guilt, shame, stress, aggravation and unhappiness, because we allowed ourselves to become out of control. We cause a lot of our own problems, simply by being undisciplined.
We cannot go through life just doing whatever we "feel" like doing; we have to take control of our feelings, and do what we know is right, even when we don't "feel" like it. Doing the right thing always pays off in the long run, and often reaps benefits in the short run, as well! Don't be a "drive-through Christian", wanting instant and effortless results! God has all eternity; He isn't interested in "instant" results so much as lasting results. Instant results usually only last an instant.
Discipline really means making wiser choices. We can often make the right choice, if the choice between good or bad; but it's harder to make the right choice between good, better, or best. God is not going to do it for us. The Holy Spirit leads, guides, reminds, and directs, but He will never force, control, or manipulate us into doing what is right. It is always our choice.
I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live. (Deuteronomy 30:19)
From "Discipline and Self-Control" by Joyce Meyer