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How to Defuse Anger - Forward with Back to the Bible - July 24

  • 2020 Jul 24

How to Defuse Anger

I remember one night where my wife was supposed to be home at a certain time. But she didn’t show up. 

15 minutes went by. No show. No text.

30 minutes went by. No show. No text.

Every 5 minutes, my anger level rose. Finally, two hours go by, and she showed up.

I was losing control of my emotions. Anger was getting the best of me.

James, the half-brother of Jesus, wrote this: “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God” (James 1:19-20). 

To avoid the label of anger, James says, we should be slow to speak and quick to listen. Remember, as kids, we were told that God gave us two ears and only one mouth for a reason. That’s kind of what James is saying.

Because we want to be slow to speak, we should listen. That means we should be asking questions to gain understanding. So much of our anger comes from pride or assumptions. If we humble ourselves and seek understanding before we speak, berate, or correct, we’ll display wisdom. We’ll display as James say, the righteousness of God.


Text in Context: Read James 1:19-27 

Reflect: What is the religious life that God desires? How do we demonstrate this? What does a non-righteous life look like? How does this correspond to James’ mirror illustration?

Respond: Think about a relationship that has struggled. What would have changed if verses 19-20 were applied? How will you put this passage into practice this week?

Prayer: Father, thank you for your Word. I know I haven’t always been slow to speak, but instead quick to anger. I am sorry. Help me to seek understanding and demonstrate your righteousness today.

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