When last did you get so angry that you just wanted to lash out and hurt back? Sometimes in life, we have to suffer an unbearably unjust situation, and we get angry and resentful towards the person causing it. Anger and resentment are real, and it is understandable.
Whether it is justified or not, it is still our responsibility how we are going to react. When people mistreat us and there’s nothing we can do about it, we get angry.
If we just look around us, seeing the unfairness and injustice, we get angry. When we see the comments on social media, the hatred against nations, the corruption and crime, famine, disease and so forth, we react like the rest of the world, with anger.
Our first reaction to getting angry in the face of unfairness never really goes away. God’s Word says that we are to control our tempers, even in the face of unfairness.
Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs. -Proverbs 19:11
Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. -James 1:19-20
What does righteousness mean that God desires? It means to be in His will! Ouch… that hurts! We may be able to brush off the respect of men, but the righteousness of God doesn’t go away so easily.
Do to others as you would like them to do to you. -Luke 6:31
When we overlook wrongs, we treat others the way we want to be treated. But what if the wrong is something really big? What if we can’t just get over it? We still have choices. If the wrong is something real – abuse, neglect, criminal – then do something about it. Don’t just get angry, but take action. Enlist the help of someone who can stop it. If it can’t, then do what we should do in the first place, pray about it!
Never let your anger control you. God recognizes that sometimes, we do get angry. Often, we need to get angry to remedy a situation or to spur us on to action.
Don’t sin by letting anger control you. Think about it overnight and remain silent. -Psalm 4:4
Are you thinking something like, “She does not know my situation, I have a right to be angry. Is that wrong?” Being angry isn’t a sin, but being controlled by your anger is a sin.
And don’t sin by letting anger control you. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil. -Ephesians 4:26-27
Need a change of attitude? Go do something kind for someone. Volunteer your time. Do good, forgetting about the person who’s made you angry for a while. Take the focus off yourself, and put it back on GOD!
Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper – it only leads to harm. -Psalm 37:8
So now you ask…how do I do this? You pray. Pray for yourself. Pray for the person who is making you angry. Pray for the situation. Pray that your heart will be softened and you’ll forgive. Pray for your country, pray for all the injustice in this world.
People can’t change people. Only God can change people.
But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. -Colossians 3:8, 12-13
If you cannot forgive and let go of the anger it is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Un-forgiveness is toxic to your soul. It affects every part of your life, and it manifests in sickness, in tension, and in anger.
Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven. -Luke 6:37
Is it possible? Yes, for sure! Is it easy? No, definitely not! Unfortunately only you can make that decision to control your anger and to forgive. God gave us all the tools necessary. If He can forgive you and me and let His Son die for us, what kind of people are we that will not forgive? Hard words, but true!