As we come to the final installment of this reading plan, let’s recap.
· We’ve looked closely at the negative effects of becoming angry versus the benefits of maintaining self-control.
· We’ve learned that, like David, we can trust God to help us relinquish our anger.
· James reminds us to lay aside ungodly attitudes such as anger and submit to God and accept his Word.
· The apostle Paul warns us against unpleasant attitudes such as anger that can lead us to sin.
· The wise writer of Proverbs helps us see how anger makes us vulnerable.
· We recognize that revenge, often fueled by anger and unforgiveness, is best left to God.
Today we look at love as a force that can drive away anger.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr said: “Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.” But what does love have to do with any of this? God’s Word defines love in ways that look quite different than our culture often dictates. The kind of love described turns anger on its head.
God, show me how to love others so that it quenches and surpasses the anger within me.
The apostle Paul presents love as an ingredient to keep anger at bay.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Kind, patient, unselfish, humble, unenvious are a few words used to describe love. It’s hard to imagine anger getting its way if we keep these attributes in focus. If we’re honest, we can acknowledge that anger raises its head when we become impatient, act selfishly, become overly focused on preserving our pride and when kindness in word or deed is no longer our priority. Take another look at the words used to describe love? How can you demonstrate these attributes when conflicts arise?
Pray through 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 putting yourself into the verse. For example:
Lord, teach me to love others in a way that makes me patient and kind. Help me not to be envious, prideful and self-serving. I am sometimes resentful and easily angered. Help me to commit this to you so I will be able to rejoice in your truth. Amen.