Today’s Reading: Proverbs 16-19
Today’s Reflection: Psalms 19:11
Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
Many people today are ruled by their emotions and there is no emotion more potentially dangerous and destructive than anger. Anger can be fueled by feelings of frustration, sadness and loneliness. Though anger has a role in our emotional lives and can be used and expressed positively if it is dealt with and set aside.
Ephesians 4:26 – Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger.
Unfortunately, more often than not it is allowed to linger, having a tendency to cause stress and distress both for the one who is angry and for those around them. Medical science has discovered recently that many serious diseases are related to the physical changes in the body caused by excessive or uncontrolled anger.
The reasons for controlling and managing anger are known to almost all, but we don’t talk a lot about the benefit of being slow to anger, being patient and understanding with others. Proverbs 19:11 tells us this kind of patience is not merely a good habit, but actually the ‘glory’ of one with ‘good sense’.
Glory quite simply is the revelation of the truth about someone or something, a positive truth worthy of praise and/or emulation. Jesus spoke of being glorified by His sacrifice on the cross (John 17:1-3), because that action revealed the truth about who Jesus was and is—the Messiah, God’s anointed, the one who loved us enough to die for our sins.
When we are patient with others, when we take time with them even when their behaviour is frustrating, when we forgive and continue on in relationship with difficult people, we reveal the truth about what kind of people we are: as the proverb suggests people with good sense. And as God’s character of mercy and forbearance suggests, Godly people as well. Of course the opposite is also true. When we are quick to judge and condemn others, when we are fast to level someone with a harsh word or sarcastic tone we also reveal the truth about what kind of people we are (but few would attempt to call that glory).
God gives us the opportunity to decide. Would you like the crown of patience to be your glory, an aura welcoming and inviting to those seeking truth? God would be happy to instruct you in the ways of being slow to anger. He is only waiting for you to ask.
Proverbs 16:32 – Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.