As a busy mommy of nine, I've experienced my share of angry outbursts---both from me and from my children. Perhaps a little one got into big sister's art supplies...again. Maybe I've asked for "quiet voices while the baby sleeps" one too many times. On any given day, stressful situations often pop up without warning.
I haven't always been so good at controlling my anger. As a teenager, I found myself in more than a couple fist fights with those who pushed me too far, and I remember times when I've been the queen of cutting words.
But, over time, maturity in Christ has changed my heart and I'm learning that there are definitely more appropriate responses to anger.
"In your anger, do not sin." ~Ephesians 4:26
Notice the verse doesn't tell us not to be angry. It doesn't call anger a sin.
There are very appropriate times in our lives for anger---it's a God-given emotion with the purpose of spurring us into action.
- All over the world right now there are children being kidnapped and victimized in the name of lust, addiction, and greed. This should make us angry.
- Satan is messing with the majority of marriages in devastating ways. He's even got many convinced that the holy covenant of marriage is archaic and unimportant. This should make us angry.
Then there's the little things like a loved one who has betrayed, a punk who throws around God's holy name carelessly, a bully who is causing my child to question his own worth. Then there are the really little things...
These are all instances to get angry about. Anger is OK. It's how we deal with the anger that matters.
There are a lot of really big things people can do to deal with these situations in a non-sinful way.
- Rescue teens off the streets and give them a safe haven and a fresh start.
- Offer Christian counseling and mediation to a hurting couple.
- Round up punks, offer them a toothbrush for their filthy mouths and a ride to church.
But are these really big fixes feasible for this busy mommy of nine---are they feasible for you?
Often times they're not...and that's OK too.
The biggest thing any of us can do in any anger-inducing situation is to PRAY.
Prayer really does change things because every prayer plants a seed.
You've heard the term, "the flood gates of Heaven." Every prayer adds more and more pressure behind those floodgates and pretty soon they burst open with answers...and peace...and fixes to problems.
There are many good solutions to the problem of sin that brings us to the point of anger, but the very best solution, and the one we can all take part in at any time, is prayer.
"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God" ~Philippians 4:6
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This article was published in the 100th edition of The Christian Home magazine.
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