“O Almighty God, give to Thy servant a meek and gentle spirit, that I may be slow to anger, and easy to mercy and forgiveness. Give me a wise and constant heart, that I may never be moved to an intemperate anger for any injury that is done or offered. Lord, let me ever be courteous, and easy to be entreated; let me never fall into a peevish or contentious spirit, but follow peace with all men; offering forgiveness, inviting them by courtesies, ready to confess my own errors, apt to make amends, and desirous to be reconciled. Let no sickness or cross accident, no employment or weariness, make me angry or ungentle and discontented, or unthankful, or uneasy to them that minister to me; but in all things make me like unto the holy Jesus—Amen.” _Jeremy Taylor, (Prayers Ancient and Modern: Selected and Arranged for Daily Reading by Mary Wilder Tileston)
Here’s my thoughts on a new revolution: Never speak or act when you’re angry.
Things seldom end well when the motivation behind our actions is anger.
I know the Bible records that Jesus got angry (e.g. Mark 3:5) but I hate to break it to you – but you and I are no Jesus. The term “blind rage” will never be applied to God but it describes perfectly the climate of our nation, communities, and many homes today.
Of course we will become angry.
Anger is a human emotion and is sometimes very appropriate. But nevertheless, “fighting fire with fire” usually ends up with both parties getting burned.
St. Paul advised: “Be angry and sin not.” (Ephesians 4:26)
How can we do this?
An excellent way is to commit to never speak or act when angry. Give yourself time to cool off and think things through. Sleep on it. Think things through. Resolve why you’re angry (anger is usually a secondary emotion).
Not acting while you’re angry does not mean you shouldn’t act, it means waiting until your are no longer extending an angry hand or word intend on hurting and instead are extending a helping and healing hand.
The ONE THING for today: Our world, nation, and communities are filled of angry irrational people. If we do not have a new revolution that demands a cooling off period before speaking and acting, I shudder to think of the revolution we are headed for.
Let’s start this revolution today – starting with you and me – committing to not speak or act when we are angry.