A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. – (Proverbs 15:1, NIV)
A gentle answer makes anger disappear, but a rough answer makes it grow. – (Proverbs 15:1, ERV)
A tender answer turns away rage, but a prickly reply spikes anger. – (Proverbs 15:1, VOICE)
God has placed me in a field where I have the opportunity to put this truth into practice daily. Teens tend to have short fuses, and carry frustration until it finds a foothold so large, that it can no longer be contained. The vast majority of the time, I find that if I speak calm, kind words, and give the student room to have a voice, (appropriately) whatever anger had begun to rage, begins to dissipate as quickly as it had onset. It is no different for adults. When we are already riled up about something, how someone interacts with us, matters. If we are treated with kindness and gentleness, whatever spiked our fury, somehow lessens, and rational thought returns to our heart and mind so that we are able to communicate like civilized human beings. May our every response be gentle and kind, so that we are agents of peace rather than proponents of rage.
O Lord, help my words,
Be gentle and kind;
Words that diffuse rage,
That render hate blind.
May wrath turn away,
With kindness spoken;
Let Your love pour out,
To hurt and broken.
Grant me Your answers,
With love as I speak;
So peace will be known,
And anger made weak.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You give us guidance in Your word that shows us how to live and love well. Thank You that gentle answers come from You, if we seek You for strength and direction when angry words or actions move in our direction. Forgive us for reacting in our own rage and making things worse, rather than responding gently to diffuse displeasure. Teach us to trust You more, so that we would stop and breathe before we respond to someone who is enraged. Give us Your words to speak gently, so that we may turn away wrath, rather than make it grow. Show us how to love others, even in their fits of frustration, just as You love us. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we depend on You to equip us with gentle answers to help diffuse anger that comes our way. Amen.
But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ. – Ephesians 2:4-5