When people lose their temper, one of the most common expressions used to describe their reaction is ‘flying off the handle’. The phrase refers to the head of a hammer coming loose from the handle as you attempt to use it. And several not-so-good things happen as a consequence.
(1) The hammer becomes useless. Your message may be all-important, but the manner in which you deliver it determines whether or not you get the results you desire. Simply stated, when people don’t take you seriously, you don’t get the outcome you hoped for.
(2) The hammer head does damage. By flying out of control, it’s likely to damage anything in its path. Words spoken in anger cause wounds, and sometimes those wounds can last a lifetime. James writes: ‘Remember this, my dear friends! Everyone must be quick to listen, but slow to speak and slow to become angry. Human anger does not achieve God’s righteous purpose.’ (James 1:19–20 GNT)
(3) Repairing both the hammer and the damage may take a long time. In some cases, it simply can’t be done. Here are some Scriptures to keep in mind before you vent your anger. Again, ‘A quick-tempered person does foolish things.’ (Proverbs 14:17 NIV) ‘Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil.’ (Psalm 37:8 NIV) ‘A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offence.’ (Proverbs 19:11 NIV) ‘Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.’ (Ecclesiastes 7:9 NIV)
So the word for today is—‘Don’t fly off the handle.’