“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. ” (Ephesians 4:31-32)
It is significant that when our Lord describes the stream of iniquity as it flows out of the heart He begins with the thoughts. “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies” (Matthew 15:19)
It is doubtful whether any sin is ever committed until it first incubates in the thoughts long enough to stir the feelings and predispose the will toward it favorably. Even the sudden flash of anger, which of all sins would appear on the surface to have the lowest mental content, is anything but a sudden eruption of the emotions. The quick-tempered man is one who habitually broods over wrongs and insults and thus conditions himself for the sudden fit of temper that seems to have no mental origin.
The short-tempered person is given to fits of rage. Long-temperedness (patience) is part of the fruit of the Spirit as is gentleness and self-control. That fruit is produced in us as we walk by under the Spirits control. The heart that has had the benefit of broad, sane thinking on moral questions, especially long meditation upon mans sin, Gods mercy and the goodness of Christ in dying for His enemies, is not conditioned to blow up when occasion arises. The worst reaction to an affront or an injustice will be annoyance or mild irritation, never a burst of sinful anger.
Heavenly Father, help me to relate to other people as You do to me, with great patience, grace and gentleness. Lord God, also help me take charge over my thoughts when they are starting to drift. To overcome them, which destroy the nature of You in me. I ask this in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scriptural Seeds Ministries