Thought for the week

The Oban Times - - Births, Marriages & Deaths - Rev Liz Gib­son

‘Be an­gry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not make room for the devil.’ (Eph­e­sians 4.26-27) ‘Do not be over­come by evil, but over­come evil with good.’ (Ro­mans 12.21) There’s plenty in the world to get an­gry about. How we re­spond to our own anger or that of oth­ers makes the dif­fer­ence be­tween let­ting God work through us or per­pet­u­at­ing the evil. Many will know the say­ing: ‘If you think you are too small to make a dif­fer­ence, try sleep­ing with a mosquito.’ Lawyer and civil rights ac­tivist Mar­ian Wright Edel­man came up with a sim­i­lar vivid im­age: ‘You just need to be a flea against in­jus­tice. Enough com­mit­ted fleas bit­ing strate­gi­cally can make even the big­gest dog un­com­fort­able and trans­form even the big­gest na­tion.’ We might not usu­ally choose to be com­pared to fleas, or per­haps midges, mos­qui­toes, or clegs, but if we’re bit­ing in the right place then our anger will be like that which Je­sus ex­pressed in the tem­ple all those years ago. Whether it’s be­tween in­di­vid­u­als or at evil in its many forms, anger can be con­struc­tive. But it is sound ad­vice not to let the sun go down on it. We may have to face the same is­sues in the morn­ing but we’ll sleep bet­ter if we end the day giv­ing thanks for some­thing, be­ing joyful about some­thing, reach­ing out in some way, apol­o­gis­ing if ap­pro­pri­ate, cel­e­brat­ing the gen­uine good that is out there too. The last word may not mean ev­ery­thing is solved but it holds out love and hope. What­ever the next day brings, we’ll know the last one ended as well as it could have.

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