East Martin CRC
Kaboom or Boiling Undercurrent
Verse 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.
Yesterday we started talking about what we need to do to prepare our hearts and lives for the changes that we need to make in our spiritual lives. We talked about bitterness but that isn’t the only thing that can taint our lives and stunt our growth as a Christian.
Rage and anger are not rare among the human race. We all deal with anger in our hearts, minds and mouths sometimes. Even Jesus dealt with anger during His time on earth and that is good news for us because we can know that anger, in and of itself, is not a sin. So knowing when it crosses the line is important information to understand. It is also important to remember that not every situation is the same, so there can be different responses in different instances.
One instance that we see Jesus getting upset is when He turned the tables of the moneychangers in the Temple. His doing that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a sin to blow up at your spouse and flip the table over on them. While Jesus’ flipping tables wasn’t a sin, flipping the table on your loved one would be. Jesus was not just throwing a fit because He didn’t get His way (Matthew 21:12-13). He was upset that these people were misusing the house of the Lord and making the people that came for sacrifices spend more by only allowing their own animals be sacrificed. They were overcharging God’s people and were taking what was supposed to be a special moment between God and His people and making it all about commercialism.
When we get angry with others it is more often about us than it is about them. They aren’t living up to our expectations or they aren’t treating us as we want them to. Maybe it is because we think we deserve more than they are willing to give. Either way if we aren’t in control of our emotions, anger will get the best of us and we will sin against them. Love is not about getting our own way and according to Jesus we are to love even our neighbor. When we get angry we need to watch how we express it. Remember it isn’t anger that is the sin, it is how we express it and the reason behind it.
As we journey into this new year and look at the resolutions that should be ours with eternity in mind, it would be good for us to pause when we feel anger rising to the surface to see if we have a good reason to be angry and if we having a right response.
Making It Personal
What are some things that make you angry? Are those things that are worth getting angry over? What steps can you put in place in your life to make sure your anger doesn’t enter the sin zone?
Making It Personal Kids
What are things that make you mad? Are they things that that are worth getting mad about? When you feel yourself getting mad do you think you could stop and ask if Jesus would be mad about it?
Father, thank You for creating us with emotions. Help us learn to handle our anger with wisdom so that our lives always bring You honor. In Jesus’ name, amen.