This weekend, Adam Tarnow taught on the sin of anger from Matthew 5:21-26 in the Sermon on the Mount. Adam shared how being angry is like carrying around a bunch of rocks: it’s heavy and limits your ability to live your life. He shared three things we must do if we are to get rid of our anger: change our perspective on anger, make reconciliation a priority, and seek to resolve promptly.
“Our problem is that we don’t understand the 6th commandment: you shall not murder. Let’s be honest, we know exactly when we are picking up and carrying rocks around (harboring anger against someone). It’s never OK to carry rocks around.” In what areas of life and in what relationships are you most prone to “carry rocks around”? In the spirit of living authentically, share your answers with your Community Group this week.
“There are some of you in this room who shouldn’t be at church today, shouldn’t read your Bible tomorrow morning, and shouldn’t pray. You need to make reconciliation a priority and go be reconciled (Matthew 5:23–24). When there is conflict in your life, just assume you are always 51% responsible.” What would it look like for you to raise the value of reconciliation in your life? Spend some time asking God to search you and reveal if there is anyone you need to be reconciled with. Go to that person, own your part, and pursue reconciliation.
“Try to make reconciliation a priority and something you do quickly." Decrease "lag time" (i.e., the amount of time between when conflict starts and when reconciliation begins.) Learn the difference between someone angering you and annoying you. Apply these four principles to a given situation to help you discern the difference between an annoyance and an offense:
Is the offense seriously dishonoring God?
Has it permanently damaged a relationship?
Is it seriously hurting the offender himself?
Is it seriously hurting other people?
What annoyances in your life do you need to overlook and let go of (Proverbs 19:11)? Share your answers with your Community Group, and ask them hold you accountable to grow in this area.
For more tips to help you resolve conflict biblically, take some time to review our Field Guide to Conflict.