Anger: the Learning Curve

Monday, March 11, 2013

I hit another learning curve in my dealings with Anger and that's a good thing. Anger is not a popular emotion. In studying the Bible, I learned that:
God created this emotion. I'm thinking it should be there for a reason. I read a great book on Anger by Lisa Bevere a few years ago. Here's what she said: "Anger is a valid human emotion as joy, sorrow, faith and fear." I think that the trick is to use it the correct way. Consider an example of using an emotion the wrong way: in a funeral, it is very inappropriate to express Joy. The loss of a person is a time of mourning and sorrow. Joyful outbursts are highly out of place in this solemn occasion. Here is a great guideline on dealing with Anger:
"Be angry and do not sin: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil."
Ephesians 4:26, 27 (NKJV) 
God gives us permission to be angry. He does not give us permission to sin. I'm on the wrong if I express or release my anger in an unproductive way. I have learned to ask myself why I am angry because suppressing my Anger only causes it to explode. This realization took years of counseling, inner healing, reading and most importantly, being cool enough to do the right thing. I have also learned to find avenues to deal with my Anger the correct way. My goal is to solve the underlying problem and not to give "Anger" control of my actions. What I mean is that once I identify what is bothering me, I use Anger as a signal that something has to change. I am wise enough to know about boundaries too. I do what I can and surrender the rest to God.
God is willing to teach me not to lose my cool. Although Anger is justifiable, as an emotion, I should not let it rule my life. I think that anger should be an escalation and not the driving force of my personality. Angry people are not attractive. Most run away from them because of the danger and instability that Anger communicates. Finding balance is the way to go and God is willing and able to teach us how to get there. I have learned that God uses different methods to accomplish that. The key was to be open to receive. Whether the teaching came from counseling, my spouse or a book on the subject, my heart had to be open and willing to receive this life changing information.
QUESTION: How can your life improve by controlling your Anger? What's the first step?

Be angry but don't blow it: maintain your passion without losing your cool by Lisa Bevere
Anonymous said...

You know, I get angry about really dumb things. Gotta keep it real. Physical pain (like a kid stepping on my foot or bumping my head on something) brings about an angry response in me faster than anything. I love the reminder that God is willing to teach me how to control even that visceral response.