My recent focus on the spiritual imperative (what must be done) of FULLY RELEASING CONTROL of our life to God has finally hit the stretch of road most of us would rather avoid–ANGER. But we’re going to tackle it head on by taking this unpleasant reality out of our hands and releasing it to God. Ready?
There are millions of Christians everywhere on this planet wondering why they get ANGRY when they know it’s wrong. Know that it damages their faith walk. Know that it paints the wrong picture for those people who see it come out. Sadly, only a small portion of believers who are carrying DEEP-SEATED ANGER inside them are willing to acknowledge it, let alone expose it to God. That was ME early in my faith walk.
This anger coin has two sides: 1) The overt, exploding anger made manifest in the expression of thoughts antithetical to living a Christ-like life; and 2) The simmering silence of pain that comes from trying to hold anger inside and prevent it from escaping into the world.
Both forms are destructive. Both forms produce a wave of guilt that rolls us to kiss our life’s shore. Both forms cry out for the same treatment—asking God to transform our heart…not chain it down.
God taught me that our ANGER REACTION to a challenge or threat or circumstance is mostly determined by how much of God’s Word we have pre-loaded into our mind and heart.
Failing to fully release control of our life to God forces us to “manage our anger.” You know…make the “right decisions” in those tense moments of life that we mess up and then remorsefully long for another kick at the can.
We cannot manager anger in our heart by trying to chain it down. We need to transform our heart to deal with the anger that visits it through our life. I do that in three phases:
Load in God’s Word discernment, wisdom, and direction before the ANGER event.
Go to God with new developments for additional discernment, wisdom, and direction during the ANGER event.
Go back to God to learn and create a new PRE-EVENT capability for the next ANGER event.
I ask God to help me resist the urge to lash out at others by embedding his Word and wisdom in my heart. To strengthen me to be patient with others just as he is patient with me.
WHAT ABOUT YOU?
Have you pre-loaded God’s Word into your heart and mind to beat back the anger urge? What one step could you take today toward that end?
“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.” James 1:19-20