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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Renée Miller

Wednesday, August 5

A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
—Proverbs 15:1

Have you ever noticed how the emotions at a football game change when the energy rises in anticipation of a touchdown? As the energy increases, so does the intensity of the cheering. This same principle holds true for our souls as well. When we are outwardly agitated and stressed, our souls become restless and unsettled.  When we change the vibration by sitting in stillness, our soul finds its center and rests in calmness.

One of the drawbacks of anger is that it makes our soul narrow and constricted. At the moment that we unleash our harsh words, we have little thought for anything but what is swirling around in us like a cyclone in Kansas.  As the swirl gains speed and intensity, the vibration within us reaches a pitch that makes us willing to stomp on anything in our path. 

Not surprisingly, the more constricted and concentrated we become, the more others respond in kind. If, in the moment of longing to speak a harsh word, we simply stop and breathe with awareness, we will change the rate of vibration and what was likely to escalate simply dies down. The cyclone of emotion is gently eased into peace. 

Gracious God, help me speak the gentle word, the kind word, the word that gives hope rather than fueling anger.