Don’t Respond In-Kind
Key Verse to Read and Treasure
Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city. (Proverbs 16:32, ESV)
How do you to respond to the anger of others? It’s so easy to respond in kind. The same way they came at us is the way we want to fire back at them. Especially when their anger seems uncalled for or out of place. We’re not doormats or robots for God’s sake! We have feelings and human response.
Being human there is only so much we can take. It takes a lot of self-control and pausing not to give what we get. Even the most even-tempered person will have to step back from a situation, pause, breathe deeply for a moment before they respond to someone who is out of line or coming at them in anger.
The Bible gives many lessons on how to respond to the anger of others. In the Gospels we see Jesus handle this kind of thing very smartly. He maintained a perfect sense of who he was and never behaved outside of his core values which included self-control, listening, discernment, authenticity, and truth. and an unshakable sense of his own value and worth. It wasn’t just about him being God in the flesh, but that he was always in control of his own person: his inner and outer being. Because He was in control of his own temperament, he did not allow others to control him or his responses.
You might notice that responding in anger even when that is how someone has come at you, does not help. If you throw fire at fire, you only have more fire. Yes, it takes a lot of self-discipline, but mostly having a strong sense of who you are at your core coupled, knowing what is true, and complete trust in God to stand by you when you are operating from truth.
The practice of answering gently will, for the most part, reduce the occurrence of anger. It’s best not to respond with anger to anger. If anger is experienced, it must be taken care of that day between those involved. At the very least, a conscious plan must be made for a soon resolution. Remember, a patient and measured response is the complete opposite of anger.
Praying Proverbs 16:32
Jesus, I want to be more like You. I don’t want others controlling my temperament and just because they are out of control doesn’t mean I need to be or need to respond with the same anger they possess. In Christ I can do all things, including staying in control even when others respond out of anger. Amen
Concerning anger management and responding to others where are you on a scale of 1-10? Is this an area you need the Lord’s help with?