Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 18, 2017
It is not easily angered. 1 Corinthians 13:5
Love is slow to anger and it is not easily angered. It is not in a hurry to get angry because it knows God is at work. Love knows God can handle the irregular person and the stressful situation. Most of the time, the best thing love can do is refrain from anger. A calm response diffuses an angry outburst (Proverbs 15:1). Poverty, injustice, and terrorism should work us up much more than traffic, forgetful waiters, and not getting our way.
Indeed, apply anger appropriately and proportionately to the degree of injustice to the underdog. But love overlooks the silly things that really don’t matter that much in the big scheme of things. A friend or family member who is rarely on time is no reason to get angry. Instead, adjust your expectations and build a time buffer into your schedule. Why get angry when a little bit of adjustment remedies the situation? Love adjusts rather than stews in anger; it calms the nerves, while anger wreaks havoc with your blood pressure. Love-filled living is by far a healthier way to live physically and emotionally.
Love is able to keep the big picture in mind. It understands that tomorrow is another day and there is no need to stress over this temporary setback. God will work things out in His timing, for He can be trusted. It is much wiser to trust God with your spouse, instead of attempting to whip him or her into shape with your anger. God’s discipline is much more thorough and precise. He puts His finger on an attitude or action and won’t let up until He is satisfied with the resulting change. Love knows how to trust God.
Therefore, pray to God before you get angry. Ask the Lord to increase your love quotient before you lash out in anger. Love understands there are better ways and a better day ahead. However, there are times love sees the need for anger. Your love needs to rise up in anger over the abuses of drugs and alcohol. These are enemies of the state and deceivers of unsuspecting souls that wreck relationships and take lives. Your love can confidently invite anger to rise up and rebuke these artificial enhancers of hope that logically lead to death. Love doesn’t stick its head in the sand of isolation and detachment, but engages by offering wise choices and compassionate counseling.
Love is all about solutions to the seduction of sin. Love is angered by sin’s control of a loved one’s soul. It drives us to our knees in our own confession of sin and to our feet to be a part of the solution. Love gets angry at times, but it is anger that is reserved for the right occasions. Even Jesus administered anger at the appropriate time (Mark 3:5, John 2:15). Love understands that anger—used selectively and prayerfully—has the greatest effect. The passion around love means you are concerned and invested.
So aggressively love without flying off the handle just to make a statement. Love unconditionally instead of trying to intimidate through anger. Love for the long haul gets healthy and happy results. Love will anger at times, but only after much prayer and patience. Love more and be angry less. Above all else, be rich in love and slow to anger (Psalm 145:8). This high road to heaven illustrates the long-suffering love of the Lord.
PrayerHeavenly Father, teach me to forgive fast and be slow to anger.
ApplicationWho has caused me to become angry that I need to love and honor with my words and actions?
Related ReadingToday’s reading is taken from Boyd’s most popular book: Seeking Daily the Heart of God, a 365 day devotional.
Post/Tweet todayA calm response diffuses an angry outburst. #wisdomhunters #slowtoanger
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