If you take a jar and fill it nearly to the top with small rocks, then pour in sand, the sand will quickly overflow out the opening. However, if you take and gently shake the glass, the sand that pooled at the top will settle between the rocks to the bottom. In much the same way, we can often be tempted to react too quickly to an event because it seems overwhelming. In kind, if we allow the emotion and intensity of the initial situation to subside, we will find that the glass truly is only half full.
The other day I woke up feeling very angry with my wife. Wisely, I gave myself some time and space to process the situation. It took the better part of the day for the intense emotions of the early morning to finally settle down. My wife and eventually discussed things and resolved the issues that bothered me.
James 1:19 (ESV) instructs, “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;” and Proverbs 15:18 (ESV) also adds, “A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, but he who is slow to anger quiets contention.”
When we take time to assess our circumstances before we act or speak, we exhibit great wisdom and mirror the very character of God our Father. Psalm 103:8 (ESV) extols, “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”
Great regrets can be avoided by simply giving yourself the gift of time whenever faced with overwhelming strife or struggles.
[Prayer]: Father, help me to plan now for how I will respond in the heat of the moment later, so that my patient reply will be practiced and perfected. Allow me to reflect your demeanor of mercy and grace to all I encounter in every circumstance. In Jesus mighty name, amen.