Temper (anger). You don’t lose it, you choose it.

Genesis 4:6-7

Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? …

it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”

Is it wrong to be angry? 

No.  Ephesians 4:26 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 

God’s warning to Cain in Genesis 4:6-7 was to think about why you are angry and to be aware that anger can turn into sin and develop rage, hatred, murder. 

healthy vs unhealthy anger

 

What is the difference between healthy and unhealthy anger?  The answer is ‘who is in control‘.  When people let anger control them,  it becomes unhealthy anger.  Unhealthy anger can block one’s love and even overcome one’s ability to think clearly. Unhealthy anger can develop into years and rage, revenge, and bitterness. 

Healthy anger is when we allow the Holy Spirit to help us focus our anger on righting wrongs, or confronting evil.  Or we can even be angry at ourselves for our failures, using anger to motivate and energize our efforts and our dependence on God.

Martin Luther said “When I am angry, I can write, pray, and preach well for my whole temperament is quickened and my understanding is sharpened.”  For myself, anger against the devil does help me focus on the real enemy and off of people and their actions. Our enemy is not people, our enemy is satan.  Ephesians 6:10-12 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

Bad anger can come from blaming someone else for our bad decisions.  Cain’s anger raged at Able because his sacrifice was accepted.  But the real problem was Cain’s disobedience in his own sacrifice. 

People don’t “lose” their temper, they “choose” it.  

How can we work through anger?  (from Gary Oliver )

  1. Be aware of anger.  Be aware of what triggers anger in you and how your body responds.
  2. Accept responsibility for anger.  Adam blamed Eve & God, Eve blamed the serpent, Cain blamed Able.  “So and so made me angry.” In reality, we choose our anger.  It’s a choice. Take responsibility for the emotion.
  3. Identify the source of anger.  Anger is a secondary emotion that is in response to a primary experience like hurt, frustration, or fear.  Anger can also be a defense mechanism to keep others away.
  4. Choose how to invest our anger energy.   This is the most critical step.  We cannot always control when we experience anger, but we can choose how to express it.  With God’s help and being honest with ourselves and others we can channel anger away from sin and into healing, forgiveness, and prayer against the real enemy of our souls.

Psalms 19:12-14

But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults.

Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me.

Then I will be blameless,  innocent of great transgression.

May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart   be pleasing in your sight,

    Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

 

Remember,  you don’t lose your temper, you choose it.  Allow God and the power of His scriptures keep your emotional lightnside shining bright and healthy.

God’s request – Fear & Love

Deut 10:12 … what does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, to love him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul

fear love

 

Paradox – Fear and Love

 

Fear is a primitive emotion.  At its root, we want to run or fight.  Our body reacts to fear to energize our body for a defense to fight or run away.  However, we are told to be a healthy Christian, we are to fear God.  While we cannot run away from God and we will one day stand before Him there is a reason we should have fear.  Some would say the word fear in the Old Testament is today interpret respect, awe.  Proverb 1:7 says “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.”  Not respect or awe, but fear.  We will all stand before God in judgment.  Many will enter heaven but many will also be cast into an eternal hell by God. We need to fear, respect, awe, obey Him.

Love is also a primitive emotion.  It is the opposite of fear.  We run to and want to be with someone we love.   God is love and has provided His only Son that came as a child to die for us.  God provided a way to cleanse our hearts from bondage and pain of sin and to share  His peace.  We have a reason to love God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit as their blessing helps us each day.

 

Jesus said…

Matthew 22:37  Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

Luke 12:4-5  “I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.

 

So how do FEAR and LOVE work together?

 

As a child, if we did not have fear of punishment or the authority of the parents we would never learn to be obedient.  If we never learned to love them we would be so self-centered we would never learn to serve and help others.  It is the balance of love and fear that produces a well balanced and mature person.  A healthy family has the paradox of Fear and Love to develop healthy productive caring children.  I am not talking about abuse, but a fear that brings respect and obedience.

In my devotions this week I came across a Psalm that reflects both primitive emotions.

 

Psalms 103    (Fear and Love)

(Love in greenFear in red)

 

Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. 

2 Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—

who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases,

who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion,

who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. 

The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.

He made known his ways to Moses, his deeds to the people of Israel:

The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.

He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever;

10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.

11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him;

12 as far as the east is from the west,  so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;  

14 for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.

15 The life of mortals is like grass,  they flourish like a flower of the field;

16 the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.

17 But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children—

18 with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.

19 The Lord has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all.

20 Praise the Lord, you his angels, you mighty ones who do his bidding, who obey his word.

21 Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts, you his servants who do his will.

22 Praise the Lord, all his works everywhere in his dominion.

Praise the Lord, my soul.

Do you have a healthy fear and respect toward God?  Do you love God? Get into God’s word and a good church to learn who you should fear and obey,  but also who you should love and serve.  You will be most happy.

 

Let FEAR and LOVE toward God  make your lightnside glow bright

How to PROSPER in 2020

A promise from the Bible  Psalms 1:3

…what ever they do prospers.”

2020 ??

No one knows what is going to happen in 2020.  There were probably some surprises in 2019 that you were not prepared for.  It will be the same in 2020.  It could be the best year of your life or you may face a challenge in your family, health or finances.  So how does the Bible promise a life that prospers? You were created in God’s image with a mind and a spirit. What comes through our minds also enters into our spirit.  It could be anger, lust or hope and faith.  Your spirit helps you develop your desires and reactions to life.

A NEW DIET FOR YOUR HEART

Try a new spiritual diet.  A daily reading plan in the Bible. Choosing to take in Godly Truth and meditate on it during the day you will begin to affect a change in your thinking and in your spirit.   The supernatural power of God’s word will create HOPE and FAITH in your mind and heart.  All the blessings of God, the power of Christ’s sacrifice and the leading of the Holy Spirit become active in your life through Hope and Faith.  You will have a  closer relationship with God and Christ Jesus. As you continue daily, your reactions and choices in life will begin to prosper.  I’m not talking financially (however, following God’s principle of giving and receiving you will release blessings and better decisions in your finances).  You will also experience more peace and love, better relationships at home and work, protection from the costs of evil temptations. In other words…Your life will prosper.

Psalms 1:1-3 

Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,  and who meditates on his law day and night.  – (the result) That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,  which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—  whatever they do prospers.

 

YouVersion.com

Start 2020 with a new daily mental and spiritual diet. God’s word each day.  I use a YouVersion daily reading plan on my phone.  There are many types of plans available on almost any device.  Daily meditating on God’s Word will bring health and hope to your mind, heart, and soul.  Your reactions to whatever comes your way in 2020 will prosper because of it.

Be Patient

Be patient, we live in a generation that believes everything should be easy or immediate.  This new spiritual diet takes time and effort and soon you will be hungry for it each day. As 2021 comes close, you will be able to look back on the year and see the effect God’s Word had in your life.  Let your lightnside prosper and burn bright in 2020.

A few more scriptures for today.

Isaiah 26:3-4 NLT

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! [4] Trust in the LORD always, for the LORD GOD is the eternal Rock.

 

Matthew 7:24-25 NLT

“Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. [25] Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock.

Psalm 119:89-91 NLT

Your eternal word, O LORD, stands firm in heaven. [90] Your faithfulness extends to every generation, as enduring as the earth you created. [91] Your regulations remain true to this day, for everything serves your plans.

Psalms 5:11-12

But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; Let those also who love Your name be joyful in You.  For You , O Lord, will bless the righteous; With favor You will surround him as with a shield.