My wife will tell you that I do not move very fast. In fact this morning we arrived at church 20 minutes late and couldn’t find a seat. Good problem to have I guess. I have been told that my superhero name ought to be ”Sloth-Man”. While I happen to admire sloths, but I don’t have an affinity for them.
And maybe being slow is a good thing. This is one text that I can get behind. For I am always quick to listen, anger and speaking tend to be slower. I like to think before I say anything because my mouth has often gotten me into trouble. And since I’ve often made my living from the words I say, you can see how that would be a problem.
That’s not something that I knew right off. And it’s not a skill you can easily acquire. It takes time, experience, and patience, lots of patience. It takes maturity, which is why I think this book is later in the Bible. The books written here toward the end of the New Testament tend to be more difficult to understand and practice than the earlier ones. And they are more geared more for mature believers. This is a skill that Christians work up to as they grow to be more like Christ. This is something that is expected of you, but that you will need to grow into it.
Dear Lord, we pray this morning that as Christians you continue to call us forward in our faith. Help us to grow and mature as believers and become your disciples. You have called us to be salt and light in this world. May our witness reflect that. Help us to be quick to listen. Help us to be ready to listen and to hear first without judgment, that we may understand each other. Then Father give us the patience to work through what we have heard. And only then Father when we have heard and thought may we speak your truth, and apply anger when necessary. Let us give fair hearing and sound judgment when we speak and act. Thank you Lord for your grace in us. Let us be at least as gracious to others. In Jesus Name, Amen.