Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, James 1:19
How quickly we jump to conclusions, to become angry. To lash out in our ignorance, to react with out thought, to stop listening. To roar when we should be silent. Yes, I am just a guilty of this as the next person.
He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, And he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city. Proverbs 16:32
We shut our ears when we don't want to listen, we look at that girl in the skimpy skirt and net tights and we jump to a conclusion. We walk by that homeless person and we jump to a conclusion. But the truth is we don't know their story. We've never walked in their shoes. Never faced been through what they have- or maybe we have.
All our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. Isaiah 64:6
You see we are just as ugly and dirty as them to our Father. Our sins are just as scarlet. But He still chose to die for us- and as he hung there on that tree those who wandered by jumped to a conclusion. Criminal, God forgotten... They didn't know that as they hurried by caught up in their own little worlds that the son of God was dying for their sins. The savior of the world saw them and said, "I love them, so I'm going to pay their debt,".
See we jump to conclusion's every day, sometimes they are small- the light is going to turn. That car is going to turn. Or bigger ones. She hates me, they don't want me here. Many times assuming has no consequence. But when we jump to a conclusion with a family member or friend it can be detrimental.
Like when that person reads your Facebook post and jumps to a conclusion that it's about them- and then they get their knickers in a twist and sometimes you lose their friendship. I have had this happen to me before, and I'm sure if you haven't yet, then you will in the future.
We need to take the first verse to heart. Quick- not to jump to a conclusion, not to become angry, not to assume that it's about us. Because guess what, it's not all about us. The world doesn't revolve around us.
We need to be quick to listen. To shut our mouths open our ears and listen with our heart. In our day of social media and ways to connect with people around the world, we need to have a real conversation. Not just a "Hi, How are you?" instant message. We need to connect. What are you struggling with? How can I make your load easier? How can I pray for you? How can I meet a need in your life? And then shut up and listen.
We need to be slow to speak. Its hard to lash out in anger if we are slow to speak. If your not sure about how to respond to someone. Stop, pray. If you need to get someone else to read what upset you and compare notes.
We need to be slow to get angry. God is so patient with us- the least we can do is be the same to those we encounter on a daily basis.
If you read something and you feel that it is aimed at you, before you get worked up- examine your own heart. Usually, when we get our noses bent out of whack its because something hit too close to home. If you need to, go seek that person out, and if you need to apologise do so. Whether it's about you or not, it really doesn't matter. If you feel like you are in the wrong make it right.