Trials within and without #2. “I see red.”

Trials within and without #2. “I see red.”

Anger has many faces and all of them are ugly!

I once met a man who was ordered by the Court to attend an Anger Management Course. I knew that he had had problems, but he didn’t seem like the “angry” type; obviously this was not apparent until you got to know him. “Was the course helpful?” I asked. He said, “Surprisingly, yes. They instilled in us that anger is a choice, and since it is a choice, we have the power to choose how to act when becoming upset.” Concerningly, he later married a woman known for her angry outbursts. Not a marriage made in heaven.

Bad friends and bad leaders have this in common: They scout out and tap into your fears. They deliberately stir up negative emotions in order to control you. Thus, your best defence is to stop listening to them.

Congregations are just as susceptible to being taken over by the Angry as anyone else. Whether a church is on the ascent or on the decline there seems to be points along the way where everyone stops to listen to the Eternally Incensed. Believe me, no ocean on earth could provide enough water to douse the fires ignited by the average Angry Committee.

Each day the maturing Christian sees more of what God sees. On the one hand he sees God’s love for all men, and on the other hand he sees God’s loathing for all sin. Such love that leads to salvation, and such loathing that leads to wrath. But God has removed the punishment that was due us. Instead, “God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:9).

Anger must be “mastered” (Genesis 4:7), but better still it must be overcome with better things:

“And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness” (James 3:18NLT).

John Staiger

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