Anger. It shows up everywhere. In all kinds of situations, all kinds of people. To say we’ve become an easily-offended world understates the issue. We are living in an atmosphere of misplaced anger, where we would rather focus on the speck in someone else’s eye than deal with our own planks (Matthew 7:2-5). Christians should know better.

Recently, someone reneged on a major commitment to me. As the reality began to sink in, I found myself replaying the consequences in my mind. The offense started to take hold. I knew if I didn’t deal with it right then, the negativity would grow into full blown anger. I had a choice — continue to stew about it, or replace the resentment with something better. I decided to shift my focus to the Lord and fan the flames of worship instead of anger.

The circumstance turned out better than I could have imagined. But the greater victory probably occurred in my soul. As I resisted the pull toward resentment, the Lord unearthed areas in my own life that needed washing. He answered my prayers, and threw in some sanctification along the way.

Being sanctified is not a once-and-done process. Not as long as we’re living in a fallen world. God’s will is for us to be sanctified, so it’s important to let his sanctifying fire burn out the misplaced anger in ourselves.

Let’s not contribute to our “culture of anger.” Let’s ask the Holy Spirit to take our resentments and turn them into something far better than anger.

Heavenly Father, may we let your sanctifying fire burn up not only our petty resentments and offenses, but everything that keeps us from being holy. Help us counter the culture of anger and shine your light of hope, love and peace. Amen

Go Deeper — Today if something or someone begins to get under your skin, stop and pray. Ask God to change your perspective, and perhaps your attitude will change as well.

Tags: 1&2 Thessalonians 1 Thessalonians 4
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