Wednesday, May 13th, 2015
Soldier's Orders (Part 35)
Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret--it only causes harm.
Psalm 37:8 (NKJV)
A man's discretion makes him slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook a transgression.
Proverbs 19:11 (NASB)
A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, but the slow to anger calms a dispute.
Proverbs 15:18 (NASB)
Consider worry, anger and wrath as parts of a coming catastrophe. Worry is a dormant volcano: a mountain with deadly potential. Anger is a show of smoke and fire: a compulsion with fearful power. Wrath is an eruption of lava: a hot killer of all in its path.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: A politically correct class for offenders who stew, spout and boil over is anger management: sensible steps to cool bad tempers. But God has a different teaching for His troops. Consider three parts:
Worry: Molehills that trip us become mountains that stop us. Enemies are undeniable, but worrying about them is not your job. Write a report. Give it to God. It's your Captain's duty to lead that charge. Behind Him, leap over your nagging doubts, as they shrink beneath your feet.
Anger: Displays of temper may get us booty, like looting soldiers or spoiled children. But they do not help us as ambassadors for Christ. Because your 'Lord is slow to anger' (Nahum 1:3), you must be 'Slow to anger' (James 1:19). When you overlook an offense, you shine brightly.
Wrath: 'Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword' (Matthew 26:52). God says 'Vengeance is Mine. I will repay' (Romans 12:19). No matter how men may hurt us, Jesus introduced a new battle plan called, 'Turn the other cheek' (see Matt 5:39).
For Christians, anger management is like fielding a hit in a baseball game with a runner on third. The opposing batter slices a grounder down the line, and it's coming toward you. You scoop it up and hurl it home. The Catcher is God and the anger is out.
'Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken' (Psalm 55:22). These cares include worry, anger and wrath.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Soldier's Orders series.