Thoughts for Today
Part of making anger your servant instead of your master involves making choices. Make choices about how you will respond when those feelings of anger are rising up in you. Choose to keep your words and your attitude pleasing to the Lord. And ask God to help you do that.
A good place to start is to examine how you are expressing anger now and then prayerfully overcoming the negative responses with positive ones.
Think of the people in your life: spouse, children, parents, employer, coworkers, friends, and others. Have you expressed anger to any of them recently? How? By holding it back? By expressing it indirectly? By expressing it directly? In each instance, how did they respond to your expression of anger?
What can you do to make your expression of anger healthier and more productive? Set some goals and ask God to help you meet them.
Consider this …
Use these scriptures and others like them to guide you in your goal setting:
Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them. (Ephesians 4:29 NLT)
A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare. (Proverbs 15:1 NLT)
Gentle words are a tree of life; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit. (Proverbs 15:4 NLT)
There is more hope for a fool than for someone who speaks without thinking. (Proverbs 29:20 NLT)
A fool is quick-tempered, but a wise person stays calm when insulted. (Proverbs 12:16 NLT)
Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil. (Ephesians 4:26-27 NLT)
Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. (Colossians 3:13 NLT)
"Do to others as you would like them to do to you." (Luke 6:31 NLT)
Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. (Ephesians 4:2 NLT)
"But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!" (Matthew 5:44 NLT)
Father, help me be more aware of how I am expressing my anger. Give me the wisdom and strength to make right choices. I pray that anger will be my servant, not my master, and that I will use anger only for God's glory. In Jesus' name . . .
These thoughts were drawn from …
Anger: Our Master or Our Servant by Larry Heath. This study offers a clear explanation of anger, what causes it, and how to recognize when you are sinning with anger. It not only ministers to church members, but serves as a powerful evangelistic tool. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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