From Ephesians 4
So, stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth,
for we are all parts of the same body.
We’re moving through life inside our bodies and spirits. I can’t be you and you can’t be me. Our spirits connect through words, what we tell each other. When we tell each other truth, we have a strong connection between us. When we lie, the connection is weak or not at all.
We lie so the other person can’t know us. If there’s something I don’t want the other person to know, wouldn’t it be better simply not to tell than to tell a lie?
We live through strong, healthy connections. We can lie to each other. We can lie to God. We can lie to ourselves. Whoever we lie to, we become disconnected from.
It’s a horrible lonely feeling to be disconnected. My energy drains out and I have no source to recharge.
It’s a waste of time to come to my small group or go to church with my pretending-I’m-always-okay self. That’s not honest. It makes me disconnected from God, the people around me, and my real self. The very places where we should be real is where we show up as hypocrites.
And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.”
Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry,
for anger gives a foothold to the devil.
Anger is a toxic power surge. It drains productive energy from the angry person and the receiver. Paul says anger lets the devil in. When Satan enters, he seizes some of my spiritual real estate. When I feel angry, don’t get angry. Never obey Satan, no matter how hard he roars, no matter how pretty the temptation. My usefulness goes down.
I must quickly dissipate anger. Don’t let it seethe.
My personality assessment shows I’m an unusually low energy person. For me to lie or give energy to the devil, I will quickly become useless.
People would be surprised at how low my energy levels are. (For example, my resting heartrate is between 40-55. Even when I exercise, it’s hard to get above 110. Cardiologists say I’m okay.) Through following Jesus, I can keep what little energy I have focused and directed.
- I must never lie.
- I must not get angry.
- In the next verses, Paul says I must be a Giver, not a Taker. Funny thing about giving—it’s like going to the gym and doing a strenuous workout—the more you give, the stronger you get.