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Prayer Devotional: Day 19

The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; Slow to anger, and of great mercy. – Psalm 145:8 KJV

What can we do to become more like Jesus? When we find ourselves thinking about the past and remembering wrongs done to us, it is possible to surrender those thoughts to God and exchange them for thoughts that are compassionate, even perhaps to the person who wronged us. Although the past experience may have been unpleasant, the Lord used it for good to teach us something.

The Lord doesn’t have a quick temper. He is patient and merciful.

How many times have we gotten angry because we were hungry and didn’t have a snack? In those moments, instead of snapping at those around us and saying something we might regret, we can take a deep breath and instead think about something we appreciate about the other person. Our attitude almost immediately shifts. The Lord is a God of transformation. Amen.

Prayer Journal: Day 229

Day 229

And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. – James 3:18 KJV

Sometimes making peace with a certain situation means letting go and letting God. We cannot control what other people choose for themselves. We can only change ourselves. The Lord can show us how to make peace with people who don’t necessarily want to be at peace with us. We can’t take their actions as our personal failures. 

Peace means asking God for help when we find ourselves angry or resentful. Jesus did not operate out of resentment, even if other people wronged Him. He understood that He could ask His Father for strength to follow His Father’s will. 

The Lord knows what is best for us. He can already see the right outcome. Amen. 

Prayer Journal: Day 182

Day 182

Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. – Luke 6:37 NKJV 

Sometimes we can be a harsh judge of other people who we believe have wronged us in the past. We replay what they did in our minds and condemn them for what they did wrong. 

Forgiveness does not make what they did right, but forgiveness is a prescription for healing. Jesus teaches us to forgive, and whenever we remember those old wrongs and start to feel angry and resentful all over again, we can remind ourselves that forgiveness heals us and allows us to become more like Jesus. 

God sometimes allows difficult situations to enter into our lives to teach us. Whenever we feel angry, we can remind ourselves to forgive 70×7. Amen. 

Prayer Journal: Day 126

Day 126

Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of His inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. – Micah 7:18

When someone we worked hard for in the past hurts our feelings, it’s tempting to stay angry and hold a grudge against that person.

God expects us to show mercy the way He would show mercy to us. He pardons our sins, and we can be thankful for the mercy He shows us. Isn’t it also good to mirror His character and let go of anger and resentment?

Forgiveness helps us heal. We may not forget the lesson we learned as a result of whatever happened, but we can thank God for allowing that lesson to come into our lives. When we practice mercy and forgiveness, we become a little more like Him. Amen. 

Prayer Journal: Day 52

Day 52

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. – Colossians 3: 23-24

Whenever we feel overwhelmed by work, it is good to remember that whatever we do,  we do it for the Lord. The Lord is truly whom we serve, not men. There is really no need to please others, because our ultimate goal is to please God. 

What pleases God? Loving one another, being kind, patient, long suffering, and full of self control. 

It’s scary to lose control of one’s temper. Anger may be there to protect us in some cases, but it is a harmful emotion, and we don’t want to harm those we love by being angry.  

Unrighteous anger only makes us fools. Instead of reaching for anger in our emotional toolkit when things don’t go our way and when we disagree with others, we need to take a deep breath and be patient. 

We need to state our needs nicely, and say “please.”

Nobody likes being yelled at. We get more bees from honey than from vinegar. The Lord wants us to love, not hate.

Prayer Journal: Day 39

Day 39

“Be angry, and do not sin”; do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. – Ephesians 4:26

It seems like I am angry and resentful a lot. Why do I have a short fuse some days while other days I am almost too patient, to the point of burnout? What does it mean to be angry and not sin while you are angry? Anger is not a good emotion and is not one that is kind to your body.

Anger manifests in our bodies and sometimes even causes illness. It’s not an emotion that I want to have, and yet I feel it all the time now that I am a mother and have to juggle work and taking care of my son.

I felt anger even before I was a mother because I worked and put up with non-ideal clients, co-workers, and situations. I endured those situations and sometimes suffered in silence. Other times I fought back, and that seemed to make it worse before it made it better.

Psalms 4: 4 says: Be angry, and do not sin. Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. 

David, who wrote the majority of the psalms, was a man beloved by God. But he was a man who felt strong emotions and didn’t always do the right thing, yet he always repented and brought his sins to God.

Is it a sin in itself to be angry? I don’t think so. Otherwise, I think Jesus would have sinned. He certainly had moments when the Pharisees were harassing Him and trying to get Him to say something that would trap him. He even called them hypocrites at times. I’m sure He felt frustrated. He suffered everything we suffer and then some. Our problems are tiny compared to what He suffered and died for. It is a gift – salvation – and even though He felt anger sometimes, because it is human nature to feel angry from time to time, whether or not the cause is justified, He never sinned. He took on all of our burdens. He made himself a servant so that we could live and have life eternal. What a tremendous sacrifice!

So then, in comparison, what do we have to be angry about? The Bible tells us to meditate and be still, and that is the best thing to do after we have been angry. Meditation and stillness brings peace. Not the peace that the world gives, but God’s peace.

I want to be in that number “when the saints go marching in”. I don’t want to forgo Heaven because I was angry about some small thing that I wasn’t able to forgive. We need to be more like Jesus. We need to meditate more and be still. Amen.

Prayer Journal: Day 5

Day 5

Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fear –It only causes harm. – Psalm 37:8

I often take things personally. I sometimes take the victim role mentality. I imagine that Bad, non-ideal clients are out to get me and I let them negatively impact my health. Worst yet, this attitude is harming Jacob, my two-year-old son. That can’t happen. Momma Bear comes out. If that non-ideal client messes with me–not good. If she messes with my baby’s well-being, she’s out. I might unfriend her and never talk to her again.

Part of recognizing anger and turning it into forgiveness is the ability to let go of blaming others. We all have a hand in what is happening to us. It’s our words, or actions, our values.

Not every day we can we do our best. There’s always room for improvement. God wants us to be happy, joyful, peaceful, and loving. Not resentful, defensive, and unforgiving. Jesus died for us, when we were yet sinners. Paul said be angry, but don’t sin (Ephesians 4:26). What does that mean? Perhaps it means we need to be thankful. We need to be more forgiving of ourselves. We need to give ourselves some slack. Not everything has to be stressful in this life. God cares for us. Trust Him. He will see it through. Always.

Lord, I pray You will let me disengage the evil spirits and let go of my anger. I love You. Amen.

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