Skip to main content

The boiling point

The truth of the matter is that it is a continual challenge to both listen carefully to the wisdom being laid out in scripture and then to take it to heart - to allow it to affect our actions. The scripture often gifts us with "sterling principles" by which to live - more than advice to be considered, but rather principles by which our lives become principled. These are tested guidelines to live by - guidelines that will hold us accountable in our daily walk and will help our walk to be marked by consistency. One such principle is to make wise choices about those you walk with on this journey.

Don't hang out with angry people; don't keep company with hotheads. Bad temper is contagious—don't get infected.  (Proverbs 22:24-25)

This is a pretty stern warning to avoid hanging out with the wrong company - angry people and hotheads. This isn't just a suggestion - it is a command - DON'T do it! Angry people are generally miserable people to be around, just in case you didn't already find that out. Their entire disposition emanates their often intense inward desire to respond to all life brings them with outbursts of violent and injuring behaviors. Hotheads definitely don't think before they respond - they simply allow the emotions to guide their responses and as a result, they leave a mess in their path time and time again.

Angry people and hotheads both present a major challenge in relationships. Being around someone who is given to constantly becoming exasperated, expressing that exasperation in violent outbursts, is totally exhausting and oftentimes very demeaning. You find yourself constantly on-guard, just waiting to "duck" out of the path of their fury - hoping they will miss a 'direct strike' this time. These individuals have no idea the wake of injury they leave in their path. They are often clueless to their own harmful actions. The warning is to avoid them completely - don't keep company with them. Why? Their emotional state has a way of being contagious! There is an infectious quality about their behavior that 'rubs off' on others around them. The thing you see so often with these individuals is there attitude or behavior of having a complaining and bitter heart. In turn, they either drive others away, or draw those in who want to commiserate with them in their misery - allowing or encouraging others to become equally as bitter and angry.

Why is that God warns us against keeping company with these individuals? Since their behavior is based on the perception that they have suffered some injustice, perhaps that have been treated in a wrong manner, or have an injury resulting from some action taken by another, there is a tendency to also become quite "satisfied" in the blaming of another (justifying) for their actions or response of an angry outburst in response to those actions. God wants us to be accountable for our OWN actions - there is no place for the shifting of blame to another. We are what we are, we are where we are, because of how we have behaved, the values we have embraced, and perhaps even the compromises we have embraced. No one "made us" like we are - the angry and hotheaded person does not believe that - he sees another as 'at fault'. The old time comedian Flip Wilson used to have a saying, "The devil MADE me do it." The truth is, no one "makes us" do anything. All the "doing" stems from within.

God wants impassioned people - but he wants our passion to be expressed in ways that bring honor and glory to him, in turn, bringing evidence of his glory in our lives for others to see. Guard against associating with those who damage the view of God's glory in your life and you will find that your life runs a whole lot smoother! Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,