Dealing With A Temper

Do you have a temper? You can admit it…lots of people do. I’m a little reluctant to say so but, I do and it’s something I am not proud of and I am trying to get a hold off. What causes someone to have a temper?
Sometimes, maybe some member of our family had a temper so we learned it in our home. Or, maybe something happened to you that really hurt and that caused you to develop a temper. Or, maybe there is something you wanted to do in life… it didn’t happen and you’ve been angry since.
Most of the time, anger is bad. But there are times when a person can have “righteous indignation” meaning, they are angry because someone has been mistreated or something wrong has been done. You recall that Jesus became angry at the carnival atmosphere in the temple and overturned the tables of the money-changers.
But, if we are honest… most of the time when people get angry it’s not because someone has been mistreated. Most of the time something happened to us that was not significant enough for us to get angry but we did.
What makes us angry? It’s different things for different people.
Some may get angry when they don’t get their way. Maybe as a child they got angry when things didn’t go their way… then they got their way so they learned that anger made things happen. Yes, there is another word for that and it is “spoiled.”
For others, maybe waiting makes them angry. . Impatience is often associated with anger. For others, maybe change makes them angry. Maybe something is changing at church that they don’t like and they get angry. I could go on and on… Everyone has different triggers.
But know this… in most situations, anger is not good. James 1:19-20 says,
“Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.”
James says that instead of getting angry.. we must be quick to listen and slow to speak…” For most of us, that may be tough… Being “slow to speak…” How many times have you said something… in anger… and later thought, “I wish I had kept my mouth shut.” I’m raising my hand…
So,, if you know you have a problem with temper, how do you deal with it? I think it’s helpful to know what your trigger points are… what makes you angry…. and try to avoid those or at least prepare yourself when you are in those situations.
Ask the Lord to help you. One of the fruit of the spirit is “peace…” Peace is the opposite of anger.
So today… if you have a temper, recognize it and ask the Holy Spirit help you manager it. Ask the Lord to help you be “Quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger.”

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