Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
# 19 on my 99 Life Tips–A List is: Anger will not achieve the result you want. If you’re angry, keep your mouth shut.
I beg those of my readers who don’t consider themselves to be adherents to the Christian traditions, or see themselves as convinced by an appeal to scripture, just bear with me. Follow my thoughts with an open mind to the end, and with an eye towards your own past experiences.
I can attest to the truth of the above verses in my own life. I’ve had more dramatic scenes of anger, wrath, and righteous indignation than I care to count. Times when I could not hear. I could not see. I could not think straight. A few instances in particular stand out. I will spare you the details. Suffice it to say, no one involved had any doubt about my emotional state.
Anger has never achieved my desired result
But NOT ONE TIME have I lashed out in anger and achieved the result I really wanted. In my entire life. Not…one…time.
Search your own memory banks. Remember the last time you were so angry you couldn’t see straight? You struck out in the throes of that feeling, so certain of your righteousness that no argument could convince you otherwise. How did that situation turn out? Did it go the way you wanted?
Your mileage may vary. I can only testify to my own experience.
When I feel angry now, I am immediately certain that if I speak or act, I will be wrong. When I am angry now, it is an indicator that I am far from the kind of person who can be a vessel of the righteousness of God.
I’m writing this because our nation is torn apart. We treat each other, Americans, even ones who grew up together, as if we’re sworn enemies. We’ve been co-opted into believing that anyone with a different political view is a villain. We’re told that the “others” aren’t American, and they aren’t putting “America First”. That they are “taking your country”! We’ve lost our collective minds!
I challenge you to watch the events of January 6th with James in mind. Listen to the run-up. Listen to the speeches playing upon fear, prejudice, paranoia, just stoking up the anger to a boiling venomous cauldron. Are these people quick to hear the other side? Slow to speak about them or to them?
I’m not sure what those who marched on the Capital thought they were doing. They were acting like they believed their anger would produce the righteousness of God.
The words of Scripture above reveal that deception for exactly what it is.
I just want to ask you…my brother…my sister…are you angry?
“Well, You say you want a Revolution, you better change your mind instead.”~ The Beatles: Revolution