Be angry, and do not sin. Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still.
Recommended Reading: Romans 12:17-21
The list of circumstances in life in which we may be tempted to anger is endless. And because those events happen frequently, it pays to be prepared. How should we respond when we feel anger rising up? The timeless advice of “Take a breath; count to ten” could have easily had its origin in Psalm 4:4.
David wrote Psalm 4 in response to an unknown circumstance in his life—something he called “distress” (verse 1). He seems to have been persecuted by a group he called “sons of men” (verse 2)—a generic term, but at least suggesting a “relationship” matter. And in verse 4 he seems to pen advice to himself (or others in similar circumstances): Do not sin by lashing out or retaliating. Instead, step back and meditate on what has happened; be still when you are tempted to say or do something you will surely regret. Jesus took it a step further: Instead of retaliating, “do good to those who hate you” (Matthew 5:44).
When anger rises, let it be a motivation not to sin. Step back, consider, and pray for understanding and guidance and for a way to replace harm with goodness.
Anger is just one letter short of danger.