A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Friday, September 3, 2021
These ladies are leaving the New Holland Gift and Thrift (Reuzit shop) in New Holland after a busy morning of shopping.
Message summary: Rage is destructive on many fronts. As God's people let us invite God’s Word to saturate our lives today: “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires”.
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"Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end" (Proverbs 29:11). "The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God" (Galatians 5:19-21). “Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming” (Proverbs 27:4). “In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold” (Ephesians 4:26,27). “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires” (James 1:19,20).
After being home during the heavy rains from Hurricane Ida all day Wednesday we returned to our chaplain duties early yesterday morning. Apart from some road closures we were unaffected both at home and on the road, but such was not the case for many. There were numerous deaths in our region and much property damage.
We received a prayer request from a company we serve in Lebanon County concerning a car that was washed away in a flood from a rain-swollen creek and last we heard the search is ongoing. A manager shared a photo of a helicopter involved in the search, hovering over the company location and reports of many search and rescuers in the area.
We received another prayer request yesterday unrelated to the storm. A state trooper came to one of our companies and informed an employee that her husband had been involved in an accident. Of course this caused great distress. Thankfully he was not seriously injured but the nature of the incident is so indicative of our society's troubles.
Turns out he was a victim of "road rage". Another driver hit his car so he pulled over to check out the damage. The road rager also stopped and came at him with a knife! He sustained some knife wounds to his fingers as he tried to protect himself and will have surgery today. The road rager was not identified and got away.
Rage is an ancient human condition first seen in Cain prior to the first murder. Throughout the Bible we see evidences of unconstrained rage and anger and certainly it is a human condition all readers are familiar with. It gets a lot of attention in the media – whether it’s road rage, anger in the workplace or in the home, or wherever one chooses to unleash his or her fury on others. We see such an increase in this type of uncivil behavior in many circles today.
As a follower of Christ and student of the Bible I believe there’s a significant contributing factor to the increase of unconstrained anger. Through much of our history the teachings and principles of the Bible had a restraining impact upon our culture. This even impacted those who were not specifically followers of Jesus Christ. Most knew about the “Golden Rule” – it’s just plain common sense. There was an unspoken understanding that we are to be kind and respectful to one another and practice self-control even if it was not reciprocated.
But now with this restraint considered an option by many we see a pandemic of rage and anger in many forms. But virtually no consideration is given regarding the spiritual reasons for this increase in violence!
“In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.” Paul is giving practical instructions on life to the Ephesian believers. He acknowledges that there will be times the believer is angry.
Anger in itself is not a sin. The Bible records several occasions when Christ was angry (see Mark 3:5). In fact I believe sometimes it would be unhealthy not to be angry! God included it in our emotional constitution and there are times when it is the appropriate response.
Yet in this text the Bible lists three vital constraints on anger:
1) “In your anger do not sin.” This indicates there are to be self-imposed constraints on the extent of anger. Obviously harming other people in our anger is sin! (excepting self-defense and defense of others in our view.)
2) “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.” This indicates there are to be self-imposed constraints on the duration of anger. This prevents the long term, harmful effects of seething anger that easily leads to destructive behavior or a bitter spirit.
3) “And do not give the devil a foothold.” This indicates there must be self-imposed constraints on the ultimate source of destructive anger. If we allow anger to seethe and fervently gather evidence to support or justify our anger we are giving the devil a foothold on our emotions which in turn feeds our actions. Instead of a godly response it will produce a knee jerk reaction from the enemy who holds us down.
Let God’s Word saturate your life today: “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires” (James 1:19,20).
Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, when we are angry You tell us to stay above the fray and sin not. There are times when it is appropriate to be angry such as when we see a person harming another individual; when we have been lied to, when we have been unfairly accused or when we see the rotting decay around us due to the forces of evil. These circumstances along with many others stir up strong emotions within us and often requires a response to the matter. Keep us prayerful which will enable us to be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. May we respond as Jesus did to His many accusers, though innocent, He spoke not a word in His defense. And may we be careful not to keep a scoreboard of other’s offenses. We pray this in the mighty name of Jesus who forgives us and does not count our sins against us, but rather took them upon Himself. Amen
As we traveled through Ronks we were impressed with the tall corn framing Lynwood Road and also thinking it won't be all that long before the field corn will be harvested.
These Amish children are going to school. Pardon the poor resolution but what especially caught our attention about this photo is the boy riding the recumbent bicycle. The Amish in our area normally ride scooters like the other children in this photo.
A branch of Mennonites use bicycles and this one was prepared for bargains as the shopper it parked outside of the New Holland Gift and Thrift shop in New Holland. (The G&T store is a used clothing, housewares and many other items from local donations that helps raise funds for MCC (Mennonite Central Committee) to serve those in need overseas. Brooksyne cashiers at our local Mount Joy Gift and Thrift when she can work it out with our schedule (there are currently over 120 volunteers at our local shop).
This scenic pond and farmhouse is on Willow Road. Years ago we had a retirement party at this farm for our long-time friends Oren and Naomi.
(click on photo to enlarge)
Brooksyne often snaps photos while we pass a scene!
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Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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