Slow to Anger, to Speak and Quick to Listen
Updated: Feb 2, 2022
"You are slow to anger, rich in love Your kindness is pursuing us
You won’t condemn us, or discard us Even when we’ve gone astray Your loving kindness, sweet forgiveness Are new with every day......" Slow to Anger by Vineyard Worship
Our God is slow to anger and rich in love and is so kind to us even when we do not deserve it. As our God is slow to anger towards us, we ought to be the same to others.
I felt drawn to this verse this week and it came up again as part of my devotional this week. I just want to input here that God does speak to us when we spend time with him, read his word and listen. God knew anger was something I struggled with and He is helping me work through this. I feel there might be many people out there who struggle with this.
It says in James 1:19, "My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires".
Has there ever been a time when something/someone really annoyed you and you said something you later regret? I know I have. Things said in anger really damages not only the receiver of your anger but yourself as well. As it says in the verse above, human anger doesn't produce the righteousness God desires. We become "of the world" when we base our next words on our first, initial negative feelings.
Moses had to go up Mount Sinai twice because he broke the first sets of commandments. This was due to anger. He also was not allowed to enter the Promised Land because he did not honor God (Numbers 20:1-13). The consequences of anger can be detrimental to ourselves and others. It hinders us from doing what God wants us to do
As well as learning to be slow to anger, we also need to be slow to speak and quick to listen. We need to be careful with our words as they also have power. it says in Proverbs 18:21 that "The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit". We need to try listening before we speak. Let our words be gracious, words of encouragement and words to build people up. In Proverbs 18:13, it says to us that "To answer before listening - that is folly and shame".
Now, as Christians, we need to remember we are still human and we do fall short. We tend to put up appearances even though we know we are struggling inside. We do this because people watch us, we are trying to be perfect like Jesus and feel we can't slip. However, we need to acknowledge that we do struggle with so many things, we are not perfect, we do make mistake. Acknowledging all of these things doesn't make you a bad Christian, it actually draws people to you because you are letting them know that you are a WORKING PROGRESS!!!.
When you allow God to do a work in you and as long as you keep letting him in, He WILL do a work in you and mold you into a newer person. You will find in time, these negative feelings won't be your first reaction to things. He will prune you as it says in John 15:2 that "He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful". This is showing us that we as believers have a different lifestyle with Christ of bearing fruit as God takes away what causes harm to us.
Everyone's pruning process is different and takes time as we are all unique individuals.
In conclusion, as it says in James 1:22 that "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says".
Do as God instructs. Keep getting closer to Him because He wants to have relationship with you. You will see a change.
BE QUICK TO LISTEN, SLOW TO SPEAK AND SLOW TO ANGER!