What a good verse this would have been for me to memorize in my younger years!
Of course, there is a lot of teaching in the Bible about the dangers of anger. And I did memorize some of them.
Yet at the time of the offense I most often defaulted to my flesh instead of the Holy Spirit’s leading.
And now I can see that I was often coming from a position of pride. Pride that insisted that my position not only be listened to, but adopted.
There was a time when I was quickly provoked at middle school basketball officials and other really inconsequential situations.
Another trigger for me is people who don’t follow rules.
I remember when the pandemic first started. No one really knew anything about the illness, but they began making rules to “try to stop the spread.” And then they’d back up on the effectiveness of the rules – but kept them in place. This made me angry. I’m a rule-follower. But I want a good reason!
At Walmart there were directional arrows in the aisles to keep people all headed the same way – which people promptly ignored. Now I definitely missed them a time or two, but there were definitely people dead-set on doing their own thing. This made me angry. I’m a rule-follower and I want everyone else to be.
Fortunately, I didn’t have an open tirade in the store, but I let anger ledge in my heart, making me a mess – often for the whole day.
What about customer service people who don’t seem interested in your plight – whatever it is? I’ve definitely had my share of public rants with people showing zero compassion when I was already frustrated by a flight delay that caused me to miss a flight, an internet service problem or a burger where “no cheese” was ignored.
Or fear. I’ll never forget the day in 2014 when I was sharing about someone else’s anger that a friend said to me, “I tell my kids – ‘sometimes when I sound angry, I’m really afraid.’” Isn’t that the truth?!
Fear makes us feel out of control and that makes us angry.
I am thankful for the many family members and co-workers who had grace to look beyond the hurt I caused at the moment.
I am thankful that I have lightened up a lot as I have allowed the Holy Spirit to work more in me and as I naturally mellow with age.
I am thankful for a God that is slow to anger and abounding in love! How He loved us so much that He gave His son to soak up all His anger for our sins in order to prevent us from feeling His anger on the Day of Judgement.
I am thankful for parents that taught me about the love of God and the need to come to Jesus Christ by faith for my salvation.
If you don’t know Christ, I’d love to introduce you to Him.
If you’re like me and you struggle with being quick to anger, let’s commit this verse to memory and our wills to the Holy Spirit who will teach us and guide us in all righteousness.
If you found this blog helpful, I hope you’ll share it with friends and that you’ll sign up for email notifications so that you can check out every post as it comes along!