Term 4, Week 6, 2019 - Devotion

I recently re-read the verse, “Each of you should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” (James 1:19) As with so many injunctions in Scripture, the rationale is for our own good. We need to be measured in our responses to others and remember that our kind of anger does not bring about “the righteous life that God desires”.

On reflection, it can be very difficult to be “quick to listen” – so often we want to jump in with our own opinion. Frequently we are “quick to speak” instead! Additionally, our quick response may be engendered by our judgemental attitudes, or from believing we have just the right answer for someone’s challenging situation. Instead, we are reminded to be good listeners and thoughtful in our reply. As we listen to the promptings of the Holy Spirit we can grow in this ability.

Being slow to become angry also implies listening to the Holy Spirit. We should become angry about the things that sadden and anger God’s heart; issues such as injustice, abuse of the weak, neglect of the poor and marginalised and the arrogance of the wealthy. Instead of becoming upset about petty things that cause us offence or irritation, we should be prepared to speak up and intervene when we see wrong, in the same manner the Lord Jesus did while here on earth.

In this way I believe we will mirror the heart of God.

Mrs Carolyn Sakoulas
Faculty Head Languages/ESL Teacher
Overseas Student Liaison Officer