“5 Although we are of the same flesh and blood as our fellow Jews and though our children are as good as theirs, yet we have to subject our sons and daughters to slavery. Some of our daughters have already been enslaved, but we are powerless, because our fields and our vineyards belong to others.’6 When I heard their outcry and these charges, I was very angry. 7 I pondered them in my mind and then...” NIV UK
‘’I pondered them in my mind and then…’’
There is a difference between anger and loss of temper, and perhaps this is the biggest part of the difference – thought/reflection. You don’t just pull the trigger as a matter of reflex; you don’t allow the pan of emotion to boil over.
Someone gave this wise piece of advice: ‘When angry count to ten; when very angry count to a hundred!’
We saw yesterday how Nehemiah became ‘’very angry’’, and he was right to be. But he didn’t immediately let fly. He pressed the pause button.
Anger is such a potent (and important) force that we may live to regret what we say and do if we don’t first pause for thought.
Remember that ‘’patience’’ is a ‘’fruit of the Spirit’’ (Gal.5:). I believe the Greek word used can also be translated as ‘long suffering.’ It is the opposite of having a short fuse.
Paul says that love ‘’is not easily angered’’ (1 Corinthians 13:5). Such love is worked in us, by the Holy Spirit, as Jesus Himself indwells us. We don’t achieve it by simply gritting our teeth.
PRAYER: Please forgive me, Lord, for all my failures of patience. Thank you that what doesn’t come to me naturally can, and does, come supernaturally, by your Spirit.