How do you respond to someone who is angry?
How do you respond when someone says a harsh statement against you? Do you respond in anger and defend yourself? Do you seek to understand rather than be understood? A gentle answer may be the key.
To respond in anger seems to be the easiest thing to do. Humans are emotional creatures. We seek to defend ourselves all the time. After all, this is how humanity has survived throughout the years. Defend yourself and your family. It is how we respond to fear and attack from perceived enemies.
But is it not wise to understand the other person? To learn why they say those things against you? To provide a listening heart even though the words may hurt. To be the bigger person who seeks to understand and give a calm answer.
The world may hurt you, but you can choose not to hurt back. It seems easy to say, but it is difficult to do. I write these words not because I can easily forgive, but I write to seek to understand my thoughts and those of others.
I am reminded by the verse from Proverbs, “A gentle answer turns away wrath”. As much as it is difficult to give a gentle answer when emotions are high, it is good to know that we remind ourselves of this verse that a gentle answer can be the avenue to a fruitful discussion between people.