Monday, September 4, 2017

easy, tiger...

Good sense makes one slow to anger,
and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
Psalm 19:11

These wise words of deep character and self-control are ones I hope will be true of me. I want to be this kind of man, marked by good sense, not quick to fly off the handle with anger, and not easily offended. More and more I've seen society become a culture that caters to the offended and exalts individual outrage. We are a culture of the triggered. And nowhere is this now more apparent than in social media where people will quickly express outrage in a Twitter snippet or emotionally light a fuse with a Facebook post. My feeds often are disappointing cringe scrolls. America even has a commander-in-chief who tweets his feelings off the cuff. It is truly a sad time now for controlled thinking.

But it is wisdom that brings emotional control realizing we cannot just say whatever we want on a matter. Good sense is the antidote to a quick temper. The wisdom of God takes our finger off the trigger finger and keeps us from flippantly shooting from the hip at every perceived slight. It brings respect when we can overlook these small things because a bigger vision guides our lives and minds.

For Christians, I believe this good sense wisdom is found exclusively in the gospel. When I consider that the gospel declares me a sinner in need of saving grace, I understand others have the very same need as I do. When I realize forgiveness for my sins as well as the offenses of others is only found by Christ's death on the cross, it is hard for me to take up an offense for which Jesus died in agony. When I seek Christ's forgiveness in my repentance, it is impossible for me to hold back a grudge with someone whom I feel offended me. The gospel is the good sense that can make me slow to anger and able to overlook offenses because of what Jesus has done.

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