This Week



Love is Not Irritable

Steve Szklarek

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Love is to be the criteria of everything that we do.  Spiritual maturity is to be measured by love.  Period.”-John Ortberg
“To love is to have an inner orientation, where through the power of God I will work for the good of another person”
the greatest freedom in your life is the freedom to decide where your mind is going to dwell”-Ortberg

1 Cor 13:5:  or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful

Col 3:12: Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience

Eph 4:2:  With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love

Proverbs 16:32:  Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city

1 Cor 13:7:  Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

  1. What does it mean to be “irritable”?
    • How is the word “irritable” different than the word “angry”?

  2. If love is not irritable, then what is its attitude?
    • What does it mean to bear, believe, hope, and endure “all things”?

  3. How is “irritability” a selfish attitude?

  4. When angry, ask yourself, is your anger being expressed righteously or is it expressed sinfully? How can you tell the difference? Would others say the same?  What makes God angry?

  5. While preparing, I came across the following quote: “The Cross teaches us that anger is the worst thing and the best thing that ever happened.”
    • What are your thoughts on this quote?

  6. What are some strategies we can use to avoid becoming “irritable”?  How can we avoid falling into this mentality?  What has worked for you?


Here’s a strategy I found online: 

“S.T.O.P. Being Irritable”

  • S. — Stop, repent, and ask. We must awkwardly stop immediately — even mid-rant — to repent of our sin, and ask, “What am I desiring that is being denied, delayed or disrupted?”
  • T. — Trust a promise. Collect promises like 2 Corinthians 9:8, Philippians 4:19, and Philippians 4:11–13 to trust that combat your areas of temptation to irritation.
  • O. — Obey. Remember that your emotions are gauges, not guides. Don’t let irritation reign in you (Romans 6:12). As you obey 1 Corinthians 13:5in faith you will find that your emotions will, however reluctantly at first, follow. Love obeys (John 14:15).
  • P. — Plan. Yes, plan. More forethought and intention can be a spiritual discipline, an act of love, and a weapon against sin by avoiding temptations to irritability. Ask yourself, “When am I frequently irritable?” To test your self-understanding, ask this question of those who know you best (and often may be the recipients of your irritation). And based on the answers, seek to put into place some systems and habits that will remove irritable stumbling blocks from your path. Pursue the escape from temptation offered by the Lord (1 Corinthians 10:13) by taking advantage of the grace of planning.
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