8 Stop being angry! Turn from your rage!
Do not lose your temper—
it only leads to harm. — Psalm 37:8 NLT
Considering all that is going on in this country and around the world, this is a very timely message. Every day we see the wasteful results of those that choose to express their anger with violence and illegal acts. God gave us our emotions and one of those is anger. There is an anger that comes from righteous indignation when we see the evil being done to others in our cities across the world. But that anger must be controlled and pointed in the right direction. Our response must be to hate the sin and love the sinner. Unless we are expressing our feelings about sin and evil actions, we should never use the word “hate”. Jesus has set the standard. We are not allowed to pick what we will love or hate, He has already shown us the right way. We are all guilty of allowing our anger to control us at times, so we need to learn to pray before we react to any situation.
We must pray for those that have been deceived into thinking that violence is a solution to their issues. Each of us needs to set aside a few minutes of each day to pray about this issue and for praying especially for the cities that we call home.
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.–Gal. 5:19-21 (NIV)
God is waiting to show you the Way.
If we continually persist in committing any of the actions listed above, we are walking by the flesh. Our flesh is in control of our thoughts and therefore our actions. If we are having problems in any of these areas we need to do some heart-searching. We need to allow the Holy Spirit to have control of our thoughts before they become actions. Just as surely as dust enters our homes and settles on our fixtures, so do evil thoughts enter our minds and try to take up residence in our brains. We can choose to wipe the dust away or let it build up. The choice is ours. Our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit and He certainly does not want any of the world’s junk living with Him. He is there to help us keep the temple clean.
18 But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.”–Matt. 15:18-20 (NIV)