My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, – James 1:19 (NIV)
Have you ever been in class and your teacher said, “Pay attention to this, it’s going to be on the test”? I feel like that’s the tone James was trying to set in today’s verse. He’s saying, “pay attention guys, this stuff is important”.
So what is so important about this verse that James was trying to get our attention? I think that James was trying to set us up for success in life. James knew that becoming wise really starts with listening. If you listen to others, you can learn a lot and get good advice.
It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt – Mark Twain
He also talks about being slow to speak and being slow to get angry. As Christians, we are to be light to those around us. We should be doing things that make others want to know Christ more. A great way to do that is to be slow to speak, and be slow to anger. Instead of getting mad at someone because of what they believe or do, choose to be slow to anger. Look for opportunities to share God’s love with others.
If you choose to develop these areas in your life, you’ll be setting yourself up for success in the long run. Choose to do what James suggests in this verse, be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry!