Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- December 31, 2010
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1
Anger is a God given emotion, but when is becomes self-serving it is a relationship killer. Does anger bubble just below the surface of your emotions? Do you justify your anger as an excuse to spew your disappointment at the expense of bruising another? Has a volatile attitude become your normal behavior? If so, anger has become a sin that needs serious prayer.
Men and women alike can be afflicted with anger’s self-absorbing curse. We can blame it on our hostile home environment growing up, which may have given us a bad example of anger management. But the Christian’s process for dealing with sin is not management, but prayerful confession and repentance. I take responsibility for my selfish anger and ask God and others to hold me accountable to walk in humility and patience.
“Mockers stir up a city, but the wise turn away anger” (Proverbs 29:8).
Is anger your method for motivating work associates or intimidating your family? Just because it works, does not make it right. Behaviors created by fear do not last—they only contribute to resentment and a dysfunctional environment. If anger has become an addiction—seek out help.
Seek the Lord and admit your need for His grace and forgiveness to flood your heart and mind. Replace your selfish wants with selfless giving. Prayerfully ask the Lord to create a clean heart of patience and contentment—trade out your demanding proud heart. A life full of the Holy Spirit is gentle, loving and forgiving—there is no room for selfish anger.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice” (Ephesians 4:31).
Lastly, seek out other followers of Christ who are honest about their struggles with anger and become accountable to each other. Meet for transformation and truth, dealing in the power of the Holy Spirit. Learn how to process anger in a productive way that energizes work against injustice and serves the poor, widows and orphans. Anger channeled for Christ’s purposes is productive and redemptive, thus prayerfully process your anger.
“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you” (James 1:19-21).
Do I use my anger to control others? If so, will I release my anger to Christ’s control?
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