Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. (NLT)
It is so very easy to jump in and speak before we have truly listened. We might react in anger to what someone has said without clarifying just what has been said. It is fair enough that we might strongly disagree with someone, but the disagreement has to be real and not merely imagined.
We can use words as weapons, demolishing or demeaning those whom we oppose. We set them up as caricatures, as enemies. In fact they may well be rather normal human beings who happen to see things differently.
It is always dangerous and unwise to unleash our angry words when steam is coming out of our ears. Anger is sometimes appropriate, but it must be dealt with in ways that do not harm another person. The shrapnel of our anger can do a lot of damage. Getting things off our chest or letting off steam might make us feel better but may make others worse.
We are never to hastily reply in anger to an email or conversation. Probably best to let the heat go out of our feelings so we can make a more appropriate response that does not leave a mess in its wake. Angry words, written or spoken, can be regretted but can never be undone.
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