“I am guilty” — these were some of the words that came to mind as I sank in my seat while listening to Bro. Josh share his message on murder. I have grown to know God’s 10 commandments and their consequences, but I never fully understood their gravity until I learned the root cause. I thought that for as long as I was not actually committing physical murder, then I wouldn’t be disobeying his laws, particularly that of murder.
However, I got convicted when I learned that I had to actually deal with anger being a “murder of the heart”, as Bro. Josh termed it. Anger may not be physical murder towards another, but it has to do with a selfish desire that clouds my heart under various circumstances; it is a sin answerable to God’s courtroom that no law of man can ever justify.
I was reminded that the root cause of ANY kind of murder is anger, and giving in to it would cause me to disobey God’s law. Since God is the very definition of Love, entertaining anger in my heart is the complete opposite of God’s greatest commandment, and that is to love God and love others.
While it is good that we are conscious of our angry moods and how to control them, it changes my perspective knowing that my anger could grow from the simple irritation I feel towards other people, and it could be a result of my expectations not being met. It hit me hard — that, for the most part, the only reason I get irritated is that other people or circumstances do not live up according to MY OWN standards; instead of looking at God’s standards, I look at things through my own. Because of this, my anger manifests itself in different ways — which, ironically, I wouldn’t like if done to me — like giving the cold shoulder treatment, or wishing that a person would vanish in one snap.
However, once I realized that I was guilty of these things, I knew that there was hope.
Jesus reminds us in multiple passages of what to do, and He encourages us with God’s promises of love and mercy. Our anger issues are brought by our sinful nature and there is a solution for that; reconciliation with our brothers and sisters and repentance of our anger. He made it clear that He did not come for the self-righteous, but for the sinners who seek repentance (Luke 5:32). He reminds us of the importance to repent of our sins and to turn to God because the Kingdom of Heaven is near (Matthew 4:17). Jesus’ love is immeasurable as He bore the sins of humanity in order for us to be clean and untainted in God’s eyes.
With our sinful nature and anger issues, we wouldn’t be able to survive. It is only through Jesus’ love that we realize how unworthy we are of it, but it is freely given to us anyway. Experiencing True Love and True Life with Jesus is definitely worth sharing with others.
I am hopeful that when we allow Jesus’ love to dwell in our hearts, we can find peace not just within ourselves, but share it with the rest of the world.