Anger

Originally Written 3/20/2016

God is not quick to anger, but still does, so is it still okay to get angry? Does it provide a justification to get angry? What are we supposed to do with that anger?

As he passed in front of Moses, he called out. He said,
“I am the Lord, the Lord.
I am the God who is tender and kind.
I am gracious.
I am slow to get angry.
I am faithful and full of love.

Exodus 34:6

My anger seems to always come in series of trials that come when I am not being tried by my usual 3 or 4 big regular struggles. Recently I was given a great opportunity to not react while someone I loved was yelling and screaming. I was able to hold my temper, and not react until my temper was getting higher and I only moved to get space. Even when things continued to escalate I didn’t react only got away and took a few seconds for them to cool off. When I came back they were no more reasonable, but I was able to stand more until they tired and left me alone to fix the problem. For me this was a big win. Later this week when I wasn’t conforming to their standards and not enough was getting accomplished in their mind they got angry and made more threats. I was able to let it roll off my back and help them to realize they were once again being unreasonable.

My sponsor has explained to me that it comes down to expectations, especially with the people that we love and care most about. We want the best for them and often see where they could be “if they would just…”, we see our side of it and not the whole picture. I often want them to do this or expect them to remember something that I told them that one time. As my sponsor pointed out, we see these people day in and out and we come to depend on them. Sometimes it can scare us to see them struggle, other times it seems like the hundredth time we have told them we don’t like it when… and they never seem to remember so it seems like they are doing something just to make us mad. I have (fortunately enough) found that very rarely is this the case. The more likely case is that they are different from us, don’t think about things the same way and so don’t make the same connections as we do. And so you must give them the patience and when you run out, remember the times that they have loved you, let go, and help them. Just like I would do for a complete stranger, to give them that kind or reset is worth everything, it makes the entire thing go better, and it so often comes back to me in their kindness.

The short version goes to the bible verse, when you realize your getting angry, try to remember the love that you have for the other person. The love that God has for the other person, the love that they have shown to you and show it back to them. Ask yourself if you would be as angry or frustrated if it were a random stranger. It doesn’t always work, but it is what God shows us through his Son, and in eternity.

~JPaul

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