Anger and Malice: The Twin Destroyers

Anger and Malice: The Twin Destroyers

“… but let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger, for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 19-20 NASB

Imagine

What would this nation look like if everyone listened, thought before they spoke, and curbed their anger? How many families would still be together? How many friendships would thrive? Would it unify us?

The twin destroyers

Truth is hard to find these days, for the political season is upon us. Candidates’ signs proliferate in yards like the wild poppies in the desert after a rain. They are on every street corner. Television and radio advertisements invade our homes. Much of what we see, particularly in the tv and radio ads, promotes fear or slanders the other candidate. Pundits spout their unsolicited opinions as if we wait expectantly to hear what they think. Every election season, it is the same, but it seems the anger, bitterness and malice have mushroomed into something menacing these the past four years. Rather than dissipating after the election in 2016, the twin destroyers’ anger and malice have mushroomed into wrath and rage against friends, family, and acquaintances. One must wonder when these angry people will run out of hateful adjectives.

A Dark Cloud

Because of the seeds of hatred sown by otherwise reasonable people, Americans are reeling from the loss of friendships, isolation from family members, and the name-calling and vitriol that seems to sprout like noxious weeds in our formerly beautiful and generous nation. It grieves my heart to hear over and over from friends how they have lost lifelong friendships over a political affiliation. Facebook seethes with hateful memes and malicious comments meant to demean anyone who has a different opinion. Twitter posts, rather than informing, just supply invective, fuel for an already out-of-control blaze of wrath.

A Bitter Harvest

Anger is part of being human. We see evidence of that when we watch toddlers fight over a favorite toy. Like Frank Sinatra, we want things our way. When someone or something keeps us from getting what we want, anger worms its way into our lives. However, we sow the seeds of bitterness when we let anger make its home in our heart. Bitterness is a poison that destroys the vessel that holds it, for if unchecked, it matures into malice, rage, wrath, and murder. The first family on earth experienced a bitter harvest when Cain murdered his brother Abel. Cain made a choice not to curb his envy, but allowed his anger to blossom into malice, the intent to harm another. Instead of accepting his brother, his anger blossomed into rage. Murder followed. In today’s world, the murder of a person’s reputation, and his character is equally bad. Yet, with malice in our heart, our tongues destroy reputations, livelihoods, friendships, and families.

Weedkillers

The weeds of hatred, mistrust, malevolence, maliciousness, slander, and hatred are choking America. Her generosity, compassion, and acceptance of other cultures defined the America of the past, but now suspicion, strife, and slander characterizes her. How do we eradicate the weeds to allow her beauty to show once again? Love your neighbor as yourself. Defined by my mother, “treat others as you would like to be treated.” Love conquers anger, hatred, and the things of the world. Love’s harvest is peace, patience, joy, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control.  We will always feel anger, but to have true contentment, we must master it by loving instead of hating.

The Scarlet Thread Series by JL Smith tells the stories of biblical characters who did not manage their anger: Cain, Samson, Saul, and Moses and many others show us none of us are perfect, but a perfect God can help us conquer ourselves.

Anger and Malice: The Twin Destroyers

“… but let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger, for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 19-20 NASB

What would this nation look like if everyone listened, thought before they spoke and curbed their anger? How many families would still be together? How many friendships would thrive? Would it unify us?

The twin destroyers

Truth is hard to find these days, for the political season is upon us. Candidates’ signs proliferate in yards like the wild poppies in the desert after a rain. They are on every street corner. Television and radio advertisements invade our homes. Much of what we see, particularly in the tv and radio ads, promotes fear or slanders the other candidate. Pundits spout their unsolicited opinions as if we wait expectantly to hear what they think. Every election season, it is the same, but it seems the anger, bitterness and malice have mushroomed into something menacing these the past four years. Rather than dissipating after the election in 2016, the twin destroyers’ anger and malice have mushroomed into wrath and rage against friends, family, and acquaintances. One must wonder when these angry people will run out of hateful adjectives.

A Dark Cloud

Because of the seeds of hatred sown by otherwise reasonable people, Americans are reeling from the loss of friendships, isolation from family members, and the name-calling and vitriol that seems to sprout like noxious weeds in our formerly beautiful and generous nation. It grieves my heart to hear over and over from friends how they have lost lifelong friendships over a political affiliation. Facebook seethes with hateful memes and malicious comments meant to demean anyone who has a different opinion. Twitter posts, rather than informing, just supply invective, fuel for an already out-of-control blaze of wrath.

A Bitter Harvest

Anger is part of being human. We see evidence of that when we watch toddlers fight over a favorite toy. Like Frank Sinatra, we want things our way. When someone or something keeps us from getting what we want, anger worms its way into our lives. However, we sow the seeds of bitterness when we let anger make its home in our heart. Bitterness is a poison that destroys the vessel that holds it, for if unchecked, it matures into malice, rage, wrath, and murder. The first family on earth experienced a bitter harvest when Cain murdered his brother Abel. Cain made a choice not to curb his envy, but allowed his anger to blossom into malice, the intent to harm another. Instead of accepting his brother, his anger blossomed into rage. Murder followed. In today’s world, the murder of a person’s reputation, and his character is equally bad. Yet, with malice in our heart, our tongues destroy reputations, livelihoods, friendships, and families.

Weedkillers

The weeds of hatred, mistrust, malevolence, maliciousness, slander, and hatred are choking America. Her generosity, compassion, and acceptance of other cultures defined the America of the past, but now suspicion, strife, and slander characterizes her. How do we eradicate the weeds to allow her beauty to show once again? Love your neighbor as yourself. Defined by my mother, “treat others as you would like to be treated.” Love conquers anger, hatred, and the things of the world. Love’s harvest is peace, patience, joy, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control.  We will always feel anger, but to have true contentment, we must master it by loving instead of hating.

The Scarlet Thread Series by JL Smith tells the stories of biblical characters who did not manage their anger: Cain, Samson, Saul, and Moses and many others show us none of us are perfect, but a perfect God can help us conquer ourselves.

The Scarlet Thread Series by JL Smith tells the stories of biblical characters who did not manage their anger: Cain, Samson, Saul, and Moses and many others show us none of us are perfect, but a perfect God can help us conquer ourselves.

“… but let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger, for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 19-20 NASB

What would this nation look like if everyone listened, thought before they spoke and curbed their anger? How many families would still be together? How many friendships would thrive? Would it unify us?

The twin destroyers

Truth is hard to find these days, for the political season is upon us. Candidates’ signs proliferate in yards like the wild poppies in the desert after a rain. They are on every street corner. Television and radio advertisements invade our homes. Much of what we see, particularly in the tv and radio ads, promotes fear or slanders the other candidate. Pundits spout their unsolicited opinions as if we wait expectantly to hear what they think. Every election season, it is the same, but it seems the anger, bitterness and malice have mushroomed into something menacing these the past four years. Rather than dissipating after the election in 2016, the twin destroyers’ anger and malice have mushroomed into wrath and rage against friends, family, and acquaintances. One must wonder when these angry people will run out of hateful adjectives.

A Dark Cloud

Because of the seeds of hatred sown by otherwise reasonable people, Americans are reeling from the loss of friendships, isolation from family members, and the name-calling and vitriol that seems to sprout like noxious weeds in our formerly beautiful and generous nation. It grieves my heart to hear over and over from friends how they have lost lifelong friendships over a political affiliation. Facebook seethes with hateful memes and malicious comments meant to demean anyone who has a different opinion. Twitter posts, rather than informing, just supply invective, fuel for an already out-of-control blaze of wrath.

A Bitter Harvest

Anger is part of being human. We see evidence of that when we watch toddlers fight over a favorite toy. Like Frank Sinatra, we want things our way. When someone or something keeps us from getting what we want, anger worms its way into our lives. However, we sow the seeds of bitterness when we let anger make its home in our heart. Bitterness is a poison that destroys the vessel that holds it, for if unchecked, it matures into malice, rage, wrath, and murder. The first family on earth experienced a bitter harvest when Cain murdered his brother Abel. Cain made a choice not to curb his envy, but allowed his anger to blossom into malice, the intent to harm another. Instead of accepting his brother, his anger blossomed into rage. Murder followed. In today’s world, the murder of a person’s reputation, and his character is equally bad. Yet, with malice in our heart, our tongues destroy reputations, livelihoods, friendships, and families.

Weedkillers

The weeds of hatred, mistrust, malevolence, maliciousness, slander, and hatred are choking America. Her generosity, compassion, and acceptance of other cultures defined the America of the past, but now suspicion, strife, and slander characterizes her. How do we eradicate the weeds to allow her beauty to show once again? Love your neighbor as yourself. Defined by my mother, “treat others as you would like to be treated.” Love conquers anger, hatred, and the things of the world. Love’s harvest is peace, patience, joy, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control.  We will always feel anger, but to have true contentment, we must master it by loving instead of hating.

The Scarlet Thread Series by JL Smith tells the stories of biblical characters who did not manage their anger: Cain, Samson, Saul, and Moses and many others show us none of us are perfect, but a perfect God can help us conquer ourselves.

The Chasm

Cataclysmic foreshocks rumble throughout our society daily. Most of us acknowledge the unsteadiness but hurry on, hoping everything will stabilize, that our world will remain the same. Just like the seismic shifts beneath the earth’s surface signal an earthquake to the scientists, cultural swings foretell looming disaster, an ever-widening chasm reflecting the cultural shifts.

Keeping our balance

For years many of us have tried to have one foot on one side of the chasm, while keeping the other foot on the familiar other side. We hope the chasm will not widen, but inch by inch the gap is growing broader, causing us to struggle to keep our balance and support our precarious stance.

Teetering on the edge

However, the gap is getting too wide to buttress our equilibrium. Things like abortion-on-demand up to birth, gay marriage, civil rights, politics, the police, border control, religion, and other critical issues assault our senses, causing us to waver to re-establish our balance. Many hope to embrace both sides of these issues and still preserve our position and our friendships. Hoping to please and not offend, we find ourselves in danger of falling into the yawning chasm below.

Making the choice

At some point, we realize we must decide—go with the cultural shifts or jump to the other side—our traditional and Godly values. That leap of faith separates us from others, some of whom are family and friends. We face the epithet of being judgmental and lacking compassion, when, in fact, we are preserving righteousness. God has said in His word there can be no justice is there is no righteousness, and, as His people, we must choose the world or Him.

More shifts

The chasm will continue to widen. Just this week, the California Assembly passed a law that children can give consent to sexual encounters, opening the door to the normalization of pedophilia. New York allows the abandonment of babies born in a botched abortion, allowing them to die. Vile and obscene exploitation of women and children fill our homes with sewage from our television sets.

Suffering persecution

The anger permeating our society is palpable. The shifts in culture force people to take sides, resulting in rationalization, justification, promoting lies to support their position, and hatred for anyone who disagrees. The result—a nation divided.

The Way

There is a way to stabilize America. God’s side of the chasm brings hope, mercy, and justice for all. He gives us a new life, and a way to walk in His ways, the ancient paths. We can leave the chasm behind and return to being the nation who entered a covenant with Almighty God to follow His ways, not the ways of the world.