Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Welcome to worship as we celebrate the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost.
“Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not make room for the devil” might be a verse from today’s second reading that makes us feel uncomfortable. Being angry is something that most people would try to avoid. Yet it is sometimes anger that drives change. Does this mean that being angry is sometimes okay?
That after all anger can invoke passion in striving for a cause. This can be true, but it needs to be measured with other aspects of daily living that keep it all in balance. Other words and phrases from that reading can truly help: “Let no evil talk come out of your mouths...so that your words may give grace to those who hear”. “Be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving one another.. to be imitators of God.”
We can take to heart that Jesus at times showed anger, but also realising that it had a purpose beyond his own need. It was for others, for reasons of justice, perhaps mixed with some frustration at people with closed minds and hearts. Any anger needs to be tempered with asking, “How is this in keeping with living Christlike lives which must also include loving others as he loves them?
Rev Cannon Ian Howarth is the Rector of the Anglican Parish of St Paul's Kyneton and St John's Malmsbury and is the team leader of the Central Highlands Cluster.