Letting Go Of Anger

By Georgia (Jo) Kent

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Ephesians 4:31-32

Anger is not inherently evil. It is what we do in our anger that makes all the difference. Hurt pride, self-pity, failure, jealousy, resentment, rejection, bitterness are all the fruits of anger. Unbridled anger can be such a damaging emotion to you and to others. Harboring anger often allows you to lose control of your emotions. Never let anger turn into hatred or bitterness. If you do, you will be far away from God’s will. You may not be able to change your situation, but, you can change yourself. Anger can devastate marriages, separate children and parents, and poison close relationships. That’s why the apostle Paul encouraged believers to deal with anger quickly—before it could take a toll on their lives.

“In your anger do not sin”; Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. Ephesians 4:26-27

Like a sore festering on our bodies, so is unforgivness in our hearts. Anger leaves a gaping wound in our heart. Instead of attending to it, we leave it open. We want the world to see what was done to us. We have the need to vindicate our anger. Each time we look at what made us angry, our anger grows. Anger can destroy us from without and within. It can simmer quietly for years inside of us or quickly turn into uncontrollable rage. In almost every circumstance when we allow our emotions to grow into anger we lash out at others who have insulted or injured us. Then we are guilty of doing the very same thing that they did to us that caused our own anger to explode and we are left feeling worse then we felt before we exploded.

“And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” Ephesians 4: 32

Our world is full of injustice, hurt, and rejection. People cut us off on the highway, betray our confidence hurt our feelings and harm those we love. It’s impossible for us to avoid all the causes of anger. Letting Anger go can only happen from a growing a mature relationship with Christ. How you handle anger is directly related to how you understand your relationship with Christ. We can choose to respond to this powerful emotion in a way that will honor the Lord. When the Holy Spirit enables you to extend forgiveness to others, you will enjoy the supernatural peace and joy that God desires for all His children. Remember this important point; God uses people and circumstances to improve your character. So, make the most of your harsh circumstances, and surrender yourselves to Christ as Lord.

Lord, you are the Creator of our emotions and we turn them over to You. When we are angry, give us the desire to rise above self, and give us the strength and grace to forgive. In your precious name, Amen.”

Sweet Blessings

Out Of Adversity

By Georgia (Jo) Kent

“Cast your burden on the Lord, releasing the weight of it, and He will sustain you; He will never allow the consistently righteous to be moved, made to slip, fall or fail.” Psalm 55: 22

We have all been battered, bruised and scarred by life. So many of us are battle worn and weary from carrying our own burdens for far too long. Many of us choose to continue to wallow around in our mire. When we do, we cannot move forward. The mire is always going to be there to take our eyes off of all the goodness our Father has for us. We have a choice; we can either choose to die of a broken heart or choose to live.

“For the LORD your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.” Deuteronomy 20:4

We all have a choice in how we respond to adversity in our life, we can choose to become victims and allow ourselves to become depressed, embittered and angry, or we can choose to be victorious and use the adversity as learning experience that will only make us stronger. Regardless of the adversities that come our way, we have to stand fast in our faith. Satan is there waiting for us to open the door to worry, fear and disbelief, or for us to give up completely.

Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

God sees redemptive value in our trials. He uses difficulties to advance our spiritual life and to achieve His great purposes for us. I encourage you to allow adversity to call your faith to action rather then to question it. Rise up, stand boldly and confront that which comes against God’s purposes and plans for us. None of us enjoy trouble, but in this sin filled world, sorrow and hardships are guaranteed. Let us surrender our thinking and ask to have the mind of Christ, who trusted the Father’s ways even unto death on the cross.

Heavenly Father, give us the courage to hold on regardless of what life deals us. Knowing that with you, all things are possible. Not all things happen as we invision them or would choose them to be. We know that whatever happens, it’s only for a season. We ask for your perfect will to be done in our lives. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.

Sweet Blessings

Grace To Forgive

By Georgia (Jo) Kent

“For if you forgive others when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-15

Do you need to forgive someone? Is lack of forgiveness keeping you from serving God today? Forgiveness is not a feeling, it’s not forgetting, it’s not pretending you weren’t hurt, it’s not trusting the person again, it’s not even reconciliation. Forgiveness is a decision that you make to obey God. No one, not even God can make you forgive someone. If you can’t forgive you’ll be controlled by the person you aren’t willing to forgive. You must decide to give up your right to hurt the person back. To forgive those who hurt you because God has forgiven you for the hurts that you have caused him.

“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32

Forgiveness is not easy but it’s also not optional, the Lord commands it. We are all called to forgive as our Father in Heaven forgives. Forgiveness is not initially about the person who wronged us, it’s about us. If we will not forgive someone who hurt us, we start to change on the inside. We grow in anger and resentment. Forgiveness is a process, it takes time, but it is an act of grace that reflects God’s treatment to us. When we forgive, we release God to work directly on the person the hurt us.

“Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.” Colossians 3:13

If you are having difficulty forgiving someone today, take a moment and examine your reasons. Are you having difficulty because they have not apologized and show no signs of changing their behavior? Remember that your forgiveness is about you, not about them. Are you struggling because you are still so angry and hurt? The pain will not subside until you make the choice to forgive. You will know when you have truly forgiven when the love of God can flow through you to the person who wronged you…when you are free from the pain, anger and hatred towards that person and experiencing God’s peace in your heart.

‘To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.’

Sweet Blessings

Anger Hurts

By Georgia (Jo) Kent

“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Luke 6:45

Why are you angry? If someone’s angry in my presence, I automatically assume that they are mad at me? I frantically begin to search through my thoughts for what I did wrong. It wasn’t until I began to grow in my faith that I learned how wrong that was. I think of two things. First, why was I so insecure that I automatically assumed that I had done something wrong? And, secondly, what causes someone to become so angry that they feel its okay to share their anger with those around them? I realize, were not all so insecure that we take blame for another person’s anger. That insecurity was birthed from emotional baggage in our lives, and usually only effects us as individuals. Anger, however, is wide reaching and destructive to everyone in its path. It takes a deep relationship with God to begin a work of healing in both of these areas.

“For man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.” James 1:20

Anger is a God-given emotion that warns a person that something is wrong. You cannot stop the emotion from arising, but how you express your anger determines whether it is sinful or appropriate. Anger also gives Satan a foothold in our soul. Our actions when were angry hurt others and destroy our testimony. Habits are difficult to break.

“Tremble and do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent.” Psalms 4:4

We need to learn new ways to handle life’s upsets. The first step in overcoming problems, whether they are physical, emotional or spiritual, is to admit you are in need and desire to change. As we give ourselves over to the Holy Spirit, He will help us to grow in self-control. The Holy Spirit can teach us how to express our anger appropriately. We can never experience the fullness of God’s love through the veil of anger. The bible says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1 Ask the Lord to teach you healthy ways to manage your anger. Without Him, we will continue to be in bondage to our anger.

“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you are sealed for the day of redemption.” Ephesians 4:29-30

Sweet Blessings

Use Our Mouths for Good

by Kim McDougal

“A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.” – Proverbs 15:1,2 KJV

Some things just don’t need to be said. For instance, when my hubby would forget to turn out the lights in the bathroom after he was finished, I would find the lights on and grumble, “why didn’t he turn off the lights?!” All I need to do is turn out the lights. We forget things sometimes, and he doesn’t intentionally leave them on to get me upset! But, I had a bad habit of speaking out like that and I’ve since learned that my mouth is something I have to tame. If I go to hubby and tell him off about the bathroom lights, it won’t be long before we’re in an argument. And over what? It’s not that serious! Now, I know that’s a simple example. You may have had a situation where it’s much more intense and you’ve had to control what you say to keep the situation from getting out of hand.

The truth is we are emotional beings. And, we have to be careful to search ourselves when we’re about to say something. Our words have life folks. We can speak life into someone as much as we can speak death and we can speak life or death in our own lives. Our passage today says, “a soft answer turns away wrath…” All this means is “take time to consider your response BEFORE you speak.” Will your words harm or help that person? Will they be able to receive what you’re saying and try to make positive changes?, OR will they walk away in disgust? It’s so important that our mouths are used to edify (uplift, build up, encourage) others and glorify (praise, give the credit to) God. When I think of all the people in prisons, how many of them are there because their anger and words turned deadly? God understands that we are emotional, He just cautions us not to let the negative emotions overwhelm us.

And what about using our mouths to speak wisdom? The second half of our scripture talks about this. Wisdom comes from God. When we take our time to speak what God would have us say, we’re speaking and using His knowledge correctly. We’re not just saying whatever we want with no regard to how those words will be received. Think about it…how do you respond to words spoken? Do you want someone to speak down to you, in a scornful way? Or, do you like someone to speak to you with genuine love and concern? Even if I have to hear something hard to deal with, I’d rather it come through love and support. So, let us pray earnestly everyday that we take more time to consider our words BEFORE we speak.