Anger & Change (Part 2)
Topic: Sunday Message Verse: Ephesians 4:26–4:27, Proverbs 12:16, Proverbs 29:11, Proverbs 16:32, Galatians 5:22–5:23
Anger & Change part two 5.22.16
Week four in a series to help us better understand our anger and how to deal with it from God's perspective
The Goal for Our Anger
God isn’t looking for us to stop getting angry altogether; that’s both impossible and incorrect. Rather as we grow as Christians, God wants our anger to increasingly move toward godly, helpful, and righteous anger, and away from selfish, hurtful, unrighteous anger.
Why We Get Angry: 4 Steps
(1) Provocation (something outside of us happens to us)
(2) Interpretation (we perceive we've being wronged and we react)
(3) Experience (we feel angry)
(4) Response (we choose actions in response to our angry feelings)
Why We Get Angry & Our Responsibility
We can't control what happens to us (provocation). Nor can we keep our angry feelings from happening within us after we feel we've been wronged (experience). But we are responsible for how we process those events that provoke us (interpretation) along with how we express our anger once we experience it (response).
Anger: Changing Our Interpretation
Because of our INCOMPLETE KNOWLEDGE, we get angry when we perceive we've been wronged, whether or not it's really true. Also because of our IMPERFECT CHARACTER, we often get angry because “the universe of me” has been disturbed--some provoking event got in the way of what we want. When our wants are more important to us than God’s will, that’s when unrighteous anger springs up within us.
James 4:1 NIV
1 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?
Galatians 5:16-17 NIV
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.
Anger: Changing Our Response
When it comes to angry feelings, "you gotta do sumpin’ and nuttin’ ain’t sumpin’." In other words, ignoring your angry feelings and pretending they’re not there will hurt you in the long run. You’ve got to address them otherwise your problems will only fester and worsen.
Ephesians 4:26-27 NIV
26 “In your anger do not sin” : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold.
What to do with your angry feelings
You need to share those angry feelings with someone you can trust who’s strong enough and smart enough to help you deal with them. First, this means praying to God. As uncomfortable as it might seem, it's better to be "angry and honest" with God than "proper and pretending." It also means confiding in someone you trust. It might be a close, Christian friend. It might be someone you respect here at church. And depending on the situation, it might be a professional counselor who can help you sort through everything you’re feeling.
Proverbs 12:16 NIV
16 Fools show their annoyance at once, but the prudent overlook an insult.
Proverbs 29:11 NIV
11 Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end.
Anger: Changing Our Response
When it comes to angry feelings, reflect don't react. Resist the temptation to react to a perceive wrong by giving full vent to your anger at once.
Reflect, don't react.
Count to 10… or more; Take deep breaths; Pray to God with honesty; Journal your feelings; Exercise & physical exertion; Talk to a friend (for counsel not gossip); Take a timeout
Proverbs 16:32 NIV
32 Better a patient person than a warrior, one with self-control than one who takes a city.
Galatians 5:22-23 NIV
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.