“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.” James 1:19-20
There are three principles we can learn from these verses—which can either bless our lives or butcher our lives:
- Listening - When we are poor listeners to those around us, we become poor listeners to God. When God tries to speak to us, we hear Him but we don’t listen. When we are quick to listen, we are quicker to learn. When we’re poor listeners socially, we become poor listeners in church and fail to process what is being said.
- Speaking - How many problems could you save yourself in life if you were actually slow to speak? We mess things up when we talk about what we believe, but don’t demonstrate it. Start living in a way where people can actually see the fruit of your life. Allow the fruit of God’s word to be demonstrated in your relationships, in your job, and in everything you do.
- Getting angry - Anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. You cannot be righteous and be angry out of your own flesh, it’s not possible. If our anger is not first directed towards sin and fallen humanity, but we can easily get angry about other things, then there is a problem with our priorities.
When we learn how to become quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, we build a life of discipline and of wisdom. We can be blessed by these principles rather than butchered by them—allowing them to build up the righteousness that God wants to produce in us.