Be Kind, Not Angry
Please take a moment and read the scripture from this weekend:Ephesians 4:31-32
When my son was in middle school, we decided to try counseling to help us manage his intense feelings of anger and desperation. We saw a therapist named Linda, who helped process his emotions and hormones. I could hardly believe the incredible transformation after a few short months in how he dealt with life’s disappointments and hurts. He didn’t lash out at his sisters, he wasn’t so easily frustrated and he possessed concrete skills to use every day. Sometimes we would brainstorm and process together. One of us usually started by asking,… “What would Linda do?”
Paul’s letter to the Ephesians carries words of wisdom of what to do when your hurtful emotions get the better of you. He didn’t preach to the people that they wouldn’t have those feelings, but rather told them to “Put away your bitterness, wrath and anger”. He didn’t say it would be easy. He just said they were to follow the example that Jesus laid out to “be kind to one another and to forgive one another”.
I occasionally wonder if God gets angry with me. I know I give Him reasons to be mad and there are days when I have to remember that he loves me regardless of what I’ve done and that he sent Jesus to die for me and to forgive my sins. What he wants in return is to see that sacrificial love lived out to this hurting and broken world. Will I succeed perfectly? No. But that doesn’t mean I stop trying. It means I figure out a way to live and love better. It means I start by asking, “What would Linda do?” or better yet, “What would Jesus do?”
You’ve given us the perfect example in your Son of how you want us to live in the world. When we are bitter, help dissolve our bitterness. When we are angry, remind us you want us to be tenderhearted. Grow our kindness toward the world. Help us forgive with a grace that only you can provide. Let us be beautiful reminders of your love. We know we can only do this through the mighty, healing and saving name of your precious Son, Jesus.
Written by Julie Anderson
Julie Anderson is a member of Sheridan’s Devotion Writing Team. She works as Sheridan’s Children’s Music Coordinator where she is passionate about teaching children to use their musical gifts to praise God.
Julie is married to Scott and counts her greatest honor as being mom to Adrienne, Eliot and Elise.