Saturday Morning Musings

James 1:19-20 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.”

Good morning. 

We are living in strange times indeed.

As more information comes across our path, we must ask God for the discernment and the discretion with which to process this information. I hear healthcare workers, doctors, and medical specialists who have contrary, yet documented proof that what we are seeing is not the whole story.

STOP! Please know that I will NOT go on and on with some rant or another. What struck me today with my devotions in James is the process with which God desires us to approach any situation,

Swift to hear.

Slow to speak.

Slow to wrath.

Many of us can think back to the time when we sputtered without all the facts only to find that we needed to retract those very same words that were countered with truth. As we grow and mature, it becomes evident that God was right all along.

I have had to hone my listening skills over the years, and my ‘chronological giftedness’ has left me with decreased hearing to the place I need hearing aids (Too much loud music as a teenager!)

Often, there are things not readily apparent in a conversation. We may see and hear the sadness, anger, depression, doubt, or worry, but that may not be what is at the root of the issue.

A person who is not in control of their anger will excuse their outbursts with the fact that “I just had to let it out or I’d burst!” In fact, their discontent, disagreement, or overall dissatisfaction gathers evidence until they had enough to state their case. 

Usually, these are passionate conversations that turn hostile quickly if not handled properly. God’s same principle applies.

Swift to hear.

Slow to speak.

Slow to wrath.

I can tell someone is interested in getting to the root of a problem when they ask questions to gain clarity. Too many questions, and I’ll think them arrogant and condescending. Not enough, and I believe them uncaring or apathetic. 

Anger is one of those emotions to which we can become easily addicted. Extreme anger releases the same endorphins that are present when someone is high on drugs. Without restraint, it can be destructive and even lethal.

God tells us that when anger is present, we cannot do what is right.

For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.”

One might say, “What about righteous anger or righteous indignation?”

We see with man that it never ends well. Look at Haman, whose anger with Mordecai ended with Haman hanging on the gallows he sought to hang his adversary. Only God can have pure, holy, righteous, anger, or indignation.

That is why we are told to keep short accounts with others and with God when anger is present.

Ephesians 4:26-27 “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil.”

Anger will also open a door that easily becomes a stronghold in our life. Giving a place to the devil is like hearing a knock at the door, seeing who it is, and welcoming them into our home. Once he comes in, he immediately sets down roots and begins to affect all present.

That is why God is so adamant for us to deal with anger swiftly and adequately.

So, today, when you listen to that YouTube video that presents information that angers you, breathe deep, find your calm, ask God what you should do with this information, and wait for His answer.

Most often, the anger will dissipate long before you can retract the scathing post, email, or meme you put out. 

Lastly, as a representative and ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ, I must choose my words and actions carefully. It is not a singular effort anymore. What we say and do reflects on Christ and our testimony. Both can end badly and be permanently damaged when anger gets involved.

Swift to hear.

Slow to speak.

Slow to wrath.

We need to rehearse this in our minds until it becomes how we operate. 

Have a great weekend, and tell someone else about Daily Manna!

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