And be ye kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. (Ephesians 4:32, KJV)
No coincidences. The older I get, the more I see the truth of that. Last night I lost my temper with a person at a local pharmacy for the way I was being treated. This is the third time in a row I have left the establishment in anger. This has to stop. Whatever their issues, nothing can excuse my anger and lashing out at them. I have learned over the years from involvement in a twelve step fellowship that I am responsible to clean up ‘my side of the street’ and cannot be concerned with what others may or may not have done to bring about any given situation.
As a Christian, my obligation is to follow the teachings of Jesus and spread His message of love and salvation, not my message of frustration and anger, To rest on my laurels and say I have improved or ‘they deserved it’ is wrong and will ultimately cost me in health and happiness. Anger is bad not only spiritually, but proven to be for the body, as well. I didn’t feel well after the encounter last night, and as much as I went home and complained to my wife about the shabby treatment I felt I got, I realized I was trying to justify the only thing I can control in the situation: my behavior. I repented of this, as it is most definitely sinful for me to insult people or react with such anger. I wanted to hurt the person in the drive-up window (I don’t mean in a physical sense, but emotionally), and I know that was not the way God wanted me to handle the situation. A painful reminder that I am a sinner and have some stuff to take a serious look at in my life. Obviously, other issues are at play here.
I opened the YouVersion Bible app I have on my phone and the verse above was the verse of the day. No coincidence. God speaks to me through the book of Ephesians again.
Proverbs 15:18 A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife (KJV)