Don't let the sun go down on your anger

“Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body. In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.” (Ephesians 4:25-27)
           
Last Wednesday, I was grateful for the opportunity to lead the memorial service for Bobby Hiraprashad, a gentleman who was a part of our church for the past five years. As his family members shared memories, one of the recurring themes was the importance of keeping short accounts and not letting conflicts go on too long. His wife shared how, no matter how much they argued, Bobby was consistent about trying to not let the sun go down on their anger, as Paul wrote in Ephesians 4:26-27. Conversely, more than one of his children spoke painfully about wishing they had shared with their father the things for which they were thankful before it was too late. It sounded like they had allowed for differences and difficulties to create distance between them, and now that their father was dead, it was too late to seek reconciliation or share their heart with him.

Jesus tells us that Satan, the thief, “comes only to steal, kill and destroy” (John 10:10). He is a liar and the father of lies. And he is a master manipulator who knows how to sow division between people. But as believers we are called to walk in the light (1 John 1:7) to speak truthfully to each other (Ephesians 4:25), and to do all we can to live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:18). When we do not stay in our anger but let it prompt us towards honest and respectful dialogue with others, then we do not give the devil a foothold.

Tomorrow is promised to no one. Who has come to your mind as you have read what I have written? Is there something that has been unsaid, or a broken relationship God is calling you to mend? Put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor. In your anger, do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not let someone pass away before you speak the truth in love to them.
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