Bri Johns – Student Pastor
Deep breath as I sit down at my desk and begin this blog after a rushed and frustrating morning. I feel a bit on edge. No time for breakfast. Running late for work. Babies crying on the way to the babysitter. Need caffeine. Cell phone died and my two year contract isn’t up. Terrible drivers on the road. Nothing makes me stumble worse than bad drivers! Yes, “them” not me. I almost lost it on a guy who cut me off and then drove 35 mph in a 45 mph zone. Did I mention I was running late? What a jerk!
I am angry.
Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:9
Solomon says this so matter-of-factly; like it’s easy to not get angry when provoked. What sets you off more than anything else? Bad service? Being snubbed? Not getting the raise you think you deserved? Someone attacks you or your friend? Getting pulled over and ticketed? Being told what to do? Being told you’re wrong?
Anger is provoked when we feel either one of two emotions, fear or entitlement. Let that sink in. We get angry because we are either scared, or we feel we deserve something we’re not getting.
I had to stop myself from exploding on the guy who cut me off this morning, count to ten, and ask… What am I afraid of or what do I feel entitled to? Obviously, I feel entitled to the road, but that’s my ego speaking (plus I have a Central sticker on my car – Yikes! Don’t tell Cal.). I’m the jerk! When I am able to pin point what I’m afraid of or what I feel entitled to, I can humble my spirit by asking God to change my heart and perspective. My anger is stemming from something deeper within me. Anger isn’t the sin, my reaction in my anger is. The important thing for me to do is figure out why I’m angry.
God grieves when we give full vent to our anger. Often times anger’s choice tool is the tongue, and the damage is irreparable. We’ve all had those moments we’d like to take back where we’ve hurt a loved one, friend, co-worker, or even stranger in our anger. It hurts our relationships, our reputation, and even our witness as Christians in this world.
A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.