Friday, December 26, 2008

Overcoming Anger, Part 4

Today, we are still discussing the issue of anger. Something else that I want us to remember about anger is that it can be fueled by our own imaginations. I heard one time that life is one percent reality and ninety-nine percent perception. Oh, how true that is. Any of us can look at the same situation and walk away with completely different interpretations. Why? – perception. It kind of depends upon what kind of “luggage” we bring to the party. We all have predetermined dispositions that are based upon our own life experiences.

I once read, “Of the 7 deadly sins, anger is possibly the most fun. To lick your wounds, to smack your lips over grievances long past, to roll over your tongue the prospect of bitter confrontations still to come, to savor to the last toothsome morsel both the pain you are given and the pain you are giving back--in many ways it is a feast fit for a king. The chief drawback is that what you are wolfing down is yourself. The skeleton at the feast is you.”

We must be careful that we do not allow anger to destroy us. It does no good to replay scenarios in our heads. Scenarios of what should’ve, could’ve and would’ve been said or done. Instead, we must learn to yield our thoughts to the obedience of Jesus Christ and let him bring them into captivity. That’s what Paul meant when he said in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” That word “arguments” in the old King James Version means “imaginations”.

We must always remember that anger is a choice. Yes, you don’t have to get upset when somebody crosses you or when something bad happens to you. You can choose to be controlled and manipulated by other people who make you upset or you can choose to disregard them. It’s always our choice in how we respond to anything. Paul said in Galatians 4:12 “Brethren, I urge you to become like me, for I became like you. You have not injured me at all.”

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