Turn from your rage!
Psalms 37:8 More timeless advice from David, who knew very well what anger and a fiery temper could lead to.
“Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper— it only leads to harm.”
Psalms 37:8 NLT
If someone ever invents a time machine and they let me use it, I’d love to go back to my teen years and talk some sense into the 1970s version of Steve Sande. I’d tell young Steve to start studying the Bible regularly, and if he finds it too onerous, to at least read through the Book of Psalms. There are so many regrets and fears that could have been avoided by taking the Psalms to heart…
Today’s psalm would have been very useful in my twenties and thirties, when I was usually a pretty mellow and fun person, but would get really angry on occasion. It still happens, although very rarely. I just wonder how many friendships and work relationships I damaged by flying into a rage when someone said or did something that I took offense to.
In this Psalm, David advises the men and women of God to give up their anger, to not rage at others, and above all, not to lose their temper. In all cases, anger causes harm — either to oneself through mental or physical stress, or to others by breaking their trust and friendship.
What’s the solution? Taking delight in the Lord, knowing that His love for you is boundless, and patiently waiting for Him to either take care of the situation or lead you to a peaceful resolution of whatever is making you angry.
I’ll close this with another wonderful quote from Charles Spurgeon about the admonishment here to stop being angry: “Especially anger against the arrangements of Providence, and jealousies of the temporary pleasures of those who are so soon to be banished from all comfort. Anger anywhere is madness, here it is aggravated insanity.”1
Heaven On Wheels Daily Prayer:
Lord, You took Your loyal servant David from shepherd to king, and through Your love for him, You inspired him to write the Book of Psalms. Help me to take Your infinite wisdom as transcribed by David, and apply it to my life daily. Please let Your love for me be apparent in every interaction I have with others, leading me away from anger. In the name of Your Son and our Savior Jesus Christ I pray, AMEN.
Spurgeon, Charles Haddon "The Treasury of David: Volume 1" (Psalms 1-57) (Peabody, Massachusetts: Hendrickson, 1988)