Side by Side March 1, 2021

Side by Side with Jesus.                                                        Pastor Tom Joyce

March 1, 2021

“Be angry, but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger.”

Ephesians 4:26


There are times in everybody’s life where we become angry at somebody; the challenge is how we react to our anger and maintain our relationship with others and with Jesus. Our Christian faith is based on grace; the amazing love of God that has been shared with each of us even though we do not deserve God’s love. Anger has a way of tearing apart every relationship that it affects; when we continue in our anger, it only expands, “making room for the devil.” (Ephesians 4:27) There is a Jewish tradition to end work and any transactions at sundown. St. Paul, the writer of Ephesians, calls us each to end our anger with others before it is too late, as well as all that goes with our anger into the next day, and into the next, and into the next.  As you have accepted the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ into your heart, offer the same grace to those you are angry with so your anger does not increase and “so far as it depends on you,” maintain and deepen the relationships strained by anger. Are you so angry with somebody that you are losing sleep? It has gone on too long. Are you so angry that you cannot speak with the one who is at the heart of your anger? Your anger has gone too far.  There is an alternative to the negative effects of bottling up anger; just let it go, don’t “let the sun go down on your anger.” Maybe when Jesus told us to “love our neighbor” it was in part a prescription to prevent anger and other relationship challenges from affecting us physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Celebrate your relationship with Jesus Christ by witnessing a far better way to live this life with those around you. So, “if it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” (Romans 12:18) You have a choice, either be all stressed out and bitter with anger, or celebrate the joy of living a life in new and exciting ways witnessing the love of Jesus Christ in every relationship; it takes much less effort and you will know the joy of living life in the abundance of Christ’s love.

Rev. Tom Joyce


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