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Oilfield Workers Sharing Christ Around the World


Photo by Osama Saeed

By Mike Chaffin

Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:9

          Last week we looked at anger, one of the seven deadly sins. How do we conquer our anger, a quick temper, or uncontrolled wrath? It might not be readily apparent, but the virtue opposing anger is patience. It is so important in our Christian life.

          When we come to Christ and receive salvation, we are to become His disciple. We are commanded to take up our cross daily and follow Him. We are to be holy as He ‘is Holy and be so full of Christ that He directs our steps. To quote my preacher, “we can’t claim to follow Christ and still do what everyone else in the world is doing.”  We have to be in the world, but not of it. Being in it can sometimes cause us to get angry.

Even though God gets angry from time to time, the Bible says,

          “But you, O Lord, are a God merciful & gracious, slow to anger & abounding in steadfast love & faithfulness. Psalm 86:15

          Like God, we are to be slow to anger. That’s where patience comes in. Impatience is a major trigger. It causes road rage, lashing out with the tongue, or the fist. Once unleashed, anger moves us to wrath and consequences we would rather not create.

          The wisest person who ever lived said,

          Do not hasten in your spirit to be angry, for anger rests in the bosom of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:9

          Patience comes from trials and hardships. We endure them to test our patience and teach us patience. It is in times like these we are told to “wait on the Lord” for He will deliver.

          Be still before the LORD & wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. 8Refrain from anger & turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. Psalm 37-7-8

          If we have patience in the face of adversity it is a witness to Christ in us. When everyone else is getting angry, disgusted, or worried we should use our patience to lighten the day and show the way. As Paul put it,

          But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. 1 Timothy 1:16

          When confronted by an unbeliever who might want to pick a fight, don’t’ get angry, get real with them. Let the Holy Spirit in you lead the discussion. Paul gives us tips on how to keep on sharing the gospel.

          Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. 2 Timothy 4:2

          Patience is virtue number one. It leads the fight in our efforts to live for Christ. Pray for patience. God is good and He will deliver.

          Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for your patience with me. Help me to learn to be patient, to abstain from anger. Help me to be slow to speak, slow to anger, patient in tribulation. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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