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Week 1- anger Week 2- passion Week 3- obey Week 4- lack Week 5- join


“You could hear the anger in his voice.” This week’s word ‘anger’ carries within it a lot of emotion both good and bad. Anger at injustice and the suffering it causes can be a good thing if it is directed properly. Taunting and name calling by others can cause uncontrolled anger which is not good. Mental preparation is needed for how one will react to displeasure and antagonism. Try to be calm in situations which you know can cause anger!


“She was shaking in anger.” Anger is an emotionally charged word which means an intense emotional state induced by displeasure. This word ‘anger’ is a transitive verb defined as “to make angry.” An example is “he was angered by the decision.” Anger is also an intransitive verb as in “to become angry.” A synonym that describes a specific state of intense anger is rage. Anger in the form of rage is very difficult to control and can lead to actions that are regretted later. Keep your cool and don’t let your anger control you!


“He never raised his voice in anger.” This statement tells us that this person has great control of his emotions. We should all seek to have that kind of emotional control in negative events. When emotions are out of control, it is hard for one to do an unbiased analysis of the events that impact us. Reasonable control is a goal that we all should aspire to achieve. Think carefully how you will face stressful emotional situations and minimize uncontrolled reactions. Why? Out of control anger can cause one many problems!


“Do not let your anger get out of control.” We must answer a simple question here. What are symptoms of ‘out of control’ anger? Violent emotion that cannot be controlled is one sign. Another sign could be an intense anger that is evident by an outward display of feeling. One more symptom could be that of a desire or intent to punish or get revenge. Any of these signs would be an indication of intense anger that is or could be out of control. The use of a soft voice with the someone displaying any of these signs could be the way to defuse any potential problems from such symptoms. Sympathy and kind words work wonders against such anger!


“She was angered by her partner’s decision.” In relationships, out of control emotions will happen. However, the parties in the relationship should be willing to discuss the issues, compromise and move past the “bad decision.” Too many times there is an unwillingness to ‘forgive and forget’ and the incident is rehashed time and time again. This unwillingness to move on is a constant reminder of the bad decision. Such repetitive acts will tend to be disruptive and destructive. Do all possible to move past the incident and heal the relationship!

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“Mr. Johnson possessed a true passion for music.” Passion can be the moving force in a person’s life. Balanced passion is truly an extraordinary gift and can propel one to do great things. However, unbalanced passion that controls a person can be a “hard to control” fire that leads to irrational actions that unravel the best of intentions. Find your driving passion and then learn how to control it rather than let it control you. Uncontrolled passion can become an all-consuming fire that destroys!


“Immigration control is a controversy that has stirred passions in Congress.” This plural form of the noun ‘passion’ reveals the emotion that is stirred in its use. The most often used meaning for passion is “a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something.” Passion is a motion word, one that shows movement toward or about a subject. Two other definitions of ‘passion’ are “a strong feeling (such as anger) that causes you to act in a dangerous way” or “a strong sexual or romantic feeling for someone.” Direct your passions in a positive manner!


“She developed a passion for opera.” An intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction about some subject is a sure sign of passion. The woman in our example sentence is exhibiting symptoms of passion. Her motivation is a love for the opera. It drives her thoughts and emotions in an over-powering way. Her passion is the central focus of her activities and it drives her to unreasonable acts. Such passion can impact the direction of her life to the exclusion of normal activities. Control your passion and don’t let it control you!


“His crime was committed in a fit of passion.” Anger and obsession can pervert one’s passion about another into an uncontrolled emotion. This is the end result of the emotions described in our example sentence. A good thing can be one’s affection for and attachment to another person. However, when passion is allowed to become an obsession that overrules reason, it can produce a negative end result. Balance passion with reason and you will seldom experience negative results!


“Her kiss started out playful, but her passion consumed her in the end.” Any relationship between a man and a woman without passion is not a relationship but a platonic friendship. Passion in a relationship comes because of the romantic or sexual feelings between two people. As humans we were made to be this way. It comes as part of our genetic makeup to produce offspring and reproduce. Passion is the engine of reproducing ourselves and continuing our families!

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“Falling objects obey the laws of physics.” Our word this week implies a choice. What do we mean by that? A falling object is an inanimate object: it does not think. However, a human being is able to think and make choices, therefore a choice can be made to comply and obey or not to comply and choose another action. This verb carries within it an implied action to follow a rule or law. Also implied is a consequence like good if followed, and bad if not followed. A good rule is to obey your instinct to make wise choices!


“The children must learn to obey.” Our word ‘obey’ is a transitive verb. A transitive verb will connect a subject to its intended action. In this instance the ‘children’ must learn something. That object of must learn is to obey. In the first meaning of obey is “to follow the commands or guidance of a leader or teacher.” The second meaning is to conform to or comply with something, for example to “obey an order.” There is a third meaning which means “to behave obediently.” In all of these meanings, there is an action required. Think about what ‘obey’ means to you!


“He taught his dog to obey several commands.” As with any action word, there will be some sign of that action and so it is with our word obey. The action here is that the dog will follow the commands that he has learned. The idea ‘to comply’ or respond in a positive way is the thought that is carried within obey. It carries within it the idea of behaving in a certain pattern that is expected or required. To obey and be on your best behavior is always a good idea!


She said, “My rules are simple; obey me and you will be rewarded.” In this statement, we see that the speaker is making a command and following that command will produce results—a reward. To obey requires follow through. Action is required for obedience to produce an end result. A soldier obeys the commands that he is given. A falling object obeys the laws of physics. With obey lack of action is to produce failure. Obey what you are told and you will see that it produces good results!


“Their relationship was a good one because she believed and obeyed her marriage vows.” In most marriage relationships vows are exchanged. To not obey the vows makes the relationship meaningless. The exchange of vows carries within it the explicit intent to comply with the statements made in the vows. Thus the vows require the parties in the relationship to behave in concert with their intent. Their intentions then must carry out the actions consistent with their marriage vows!

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“The senator’s team lacks a good strategy for winning the election.” Our word this week—lack—is simple in its meaning and use. A good synonym for lack is “want.” To be without a good strategy as our example sentence states is a losing position because it indicates a lack of that which will bring success. Many third world countries lack the necessities of food and water to sustain life!


“He will not lack for advisers.” As a transitive verb, lack means “to stand in need of” or “to suffer the absence or deficiency of” something that is necessary. As an intransitive verb, it means “to be deficient or missing” something. An example of this definition is “he lacks time for a full explanation.” The sense in which lack is used can also be understood in the case of absence as in a missing ingredient in a recipe. Check your recipes to make sure you have all necessary ingredients and that nothing is lacking!


“Her problem is a lack of sleep and she lacks money to pay for treatment.” We see two words in this example sentence that alert us to a lack or deficiency and those words are ‘sleep’ and ‘money.’ As with most words, we will see some kind of sign or symptom that is a part of its meaning. As verbs show action or state of being, nouns and adjectives are descriptors of a person, place or thing. We need to look at both to see what kind of signs or symptoms they are trying to communicate. A lack of analysis will ensure that you will have a problem with communication because you will miss important signs!


“His book lacks any coherent structure.” The use of lack in this sentence indicates a void or deficiency. It has produced a result that falls short of fulfilling a need. The need here is a coherent structure which has not been fulfilled. The use of lack is an indicator of something that has fallen short of some expected goal or result. Lack carries within it the expectation of negative results or un-fulfillment. Do not lack motivation to produce results!


“Their relationship lacks emotional attachment.” The ‘glue’ for most relationships is the emotional attachment. No glue, no lasting attachment. Emotions have a way of giving the relationship meaning and intensity. Without emotions, what would give a relationship meaning? Perhaps money might work for some, but that would tend to bring out negative characteristics in the relationship. Power over what another does is enslavement and that is also a negative attribute. Make sure that your relationships have the right ‘kind’ of glue!

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“He agreed to join the debate.” Although join is a short four letter word, it has many meanings and a long history. This word first originated sometime during the 13th century and has a French origin. As you can see in our example sentence, it implies movement to do something, i.e. to debate. This movement – to join in a debate – invites a choosing of sides and how one views the subject to be debated. Be sure you join the right side!


“You join two blocks of wood with glue to make a bookend.” Join is both a transitive and intransitive verb and has 4 or 5 meanings for each. To put or bring together so as to form a unit is the definition used in our example sentence. As an intransitive verb, you might say “he joined the group to form an alliance.” The idea in join is to come together or put something together. Let’s join our friends for a 4th of July party!


“She joined the choral group because she loved to sing.” To associate with or become part of something is a sign that to join is also to become productive. In the case of our example sentence, the singer has put her singing ability to good use. Join will show signs of action or motion to bring about a collective end. Thus to ‘join’ is a bringing together of actions that have a collective end product. Her singing added to the musical impact of the choral group. Join your talents to help others live better!


“In 1776, the colonies joined forces and became a republic.” This thought is very appropriate as we look forward to the 4th of July celebrations of our independence as a nation. Their common interest brought them together and helped to bond them into a new country to fight a common enemy. That union has lasted now for nearly two hundred and forty years. That joining forces in 1776 was a very powerful union that has brought freedom to many people. Do your part to keep this Republic going strong!


“She joined her husband on the front porch and they watched the beautiful sunset.” In a relationship, it means that you are joining or connecting with another person to have a common goal. It is two people with an interest in one subject and working together to accomplish an end result. Such joining can be for one project or for a long-term period of time to achieve the desired result. Put your heart and mind into joining with another to do a good deed for mankind!

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