Anger is an emotion that all of us have felt or will feel! A formless force that manifests itself in many ways, often in the destruction or (attempted destruction) of whatsoever crosses our path.
Now whilst there are many that struggle with anger problems, often because of deep-seated personal issues, anger is such that even the most mild mannered lady or gentlemen can exhibit feelings of intense rage. Now is this all bad? Not necessarily, in the bible we are told that Jesus Christ got angry, often times at the hardness of people’s hearts towards his words.
In other passages, we are told that due to the lack of respect shown to the temple, he proceeded to physically cleanse the temple of moneychangers & those that bought & sold in the temple with whip in hand.
Now I bring up Christ to highlight the fact that anger in itself is not a bad thing, if the anger is directed towards unrighteousness or injustices. The problem though is that many of us get angry for the wrong reasons! Even if initially our fit of rage is justified.
I picture anger like a man balancing spinning plates; whilst initially he could be successful in balancing a few, as the intensity grows of balancing more & more, he quickly finds that he cannot keep track of all the plates as they begin to smash on the ground, before he knows it, what started out as a simple (albeit complex manoeuvre) becomes something he has no control over.
It’s the same with anger, we often times open up a pandora’s box of hurt, when we let anger control us & ultimately consume us. The bible of course has much to say about this;
Make no friendship with an angry man;
and with a furious man thou shalt not go: Proverbs 22:24
An angry man stirreth up strife,
and a furious man aboundeth in transgression. Proverbs 29:22
Two verses to name a few, highlighting the dangers of allowing anger to sit within us for long periods of time.
The bible says in Ephesians 4:26 “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil”
Showing us that anger becomes a problem when we don’t deal with it. The bible’s timeframe of dealing with anger is 1 day, but often times we harbour anger in our hearts for many days, months, years even. We allow it to fester & canker in our hearts, eating us from inside & robbing us of our joy
The bible says let it go! In a sinful world filled with sinful men & women, the chances of you harbouring anger is extremely high, but understand that in Christ, we have a Saviour who not only took care of the anger of God towards sinners by appeasing it through his own sacrificial death, but forever lives to make intercession for us.
The sustained anger we often show towards others is the same anger that was dealt with on the cross. Can we not show the extended hand of grace to others who have ruffled us?
Is there a time to be angry? Oh yeah!! Christians should not downplay this, but there is a difference between anger at injustices, disrespect & sin & plain anger due to emotional instability (bruised ego, pride etc)
Let’s identify them both & act accordingly! A life ruled by emotions is an unstable & dangerous life to live. Choose rather to be governed by principles & grace. Amen