28th June 2013

Playing it Cool 

If a ruler’s anger rises against you, do not leave your post; calmness can lay great errors to rest…
Ecclesiastes 10:4 (NIV UK)

Do you ever lose your cool? I know I do, and when I do it just makes matters worse.

When I get angry, I sometimes think of the song called “Cool” from West Side Story. The “Jets” gang members are angry because one of their own has been killed. Their emotions are understandable. They want to get even. One of their leaders sings the song. “Play it cool” is what he tells them to do.

In the above verse, Solomon is discussing how to respond if someone over you explodes with anger toward you. It’s interesting to note that there was no ruler over Solomon. He himself was the highest authority in the land. Maybe he is explaining what made him calm down when he was angry with someone. Elsewhere he wrote: “a gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger” (Proverbs 15:1).  Is he speaking from personal experience as the person in charge? It would seem so.

The Message rendition of the Bible puts Ecclesiastes 10:4 this way, “If a ruler loses his temper against you, don’t panic; a calm disposition quiets intemperate rage”. It’s good advice. What would be the point of escalating the tension by returning wrath with wrath? We need to find that dignified and self-controlled response.

Of course, whether in charge or not in charge, “everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19).

Let’s control our anger. And, if someone makes the mistake of being uncontrollably angry with you, don’t compound the error by losing your temper too.

Play it cool.

Help me, Father, to control my anger. And please let your Spirit guide me to find a gentle answer when faced with someone else’s wrath.
In Jesus’ name.

Study by James Henderson


bible1About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland.  This weekend James is speaking at our Leeds Church. You are welcome to attend any of our Church congregations located throughout the UK.  For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email:  admin@daybyday.org.uk

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