By: Undre Griggs, Jr
Think of the person you consider as one of the calmest people you know. Why do you think of them that way? Is it the way they act with their kids, friends, or maybe how they respond to a foes? Whatever the reason, there is something that makes you consider that person calm and not easily angered.
Proverbs 14:29 (ESV): Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly.
Of all the reasons you listed, have you ever considered the fact that the person is understanding? Understanding people tend to be able to relate to others. They know they have made mistakes and they could easily be in a similar situation. It only takes a moment to make a decision, and it is easy to regret those decisions.
There is a saying that if you live long enough, you will be rich and poor, young and old, wise and foolish, and even the righteous and the one out of line. By humbling ourselves and exalting others, we will find it effortless to relate to the other person and to remain calm. The person who lacks understanding will likely come off as self-righteous. They will see any misdeed as an egregious attack on their trust and they will find it difficult to forgive others. Their anger will fester because they believe they could never do anything like that to another person, and their lack of humility will always cloud their judgment.
Proverbs 16:18-19 (ESV): Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor than to divide the spoil with the proud.
It is always better to be a lowly person who finds friends among the poor and less fortunate. Even though they may be prosperous, the proud and self-righteous do not have enough understanding to save themselves from destruction. They live a life believing they are humble, obedient, and righteous; but the Judgment Day will prove otherwise. We see Scripture highlighting this with the parable of the Sheep and the Goat (Matthew 25:31-46) as well as the person who Jesus judged as lawless. The lawless person told Jesus he drove out demons in His name, but Jesus told Him to get away because He never knew him (Matthew 7:21-23). This is the destruction that a lack of understanding can cause in someone’s life. It is a foolish decision to live a life where you lean on your own understanding and not God’s. Choose to be humble, slow to anger, and striving for an understanding where you are aware enough to know whether you are living a righteous or self-righteous life.