Let’s talk about anger. It is a feeling, an emotion that God has given to us. It’s not one that we aren’t supposed to feel. God gave it to us and therefore we are allowed to feel it. If we take our thoughts to the Bible, we can find many examples of anger being shown, of stories about anger, God even got angry in the bible. There are times when anger is the only emotion you can express in the moment. There is a story in the bible about a man named Joseph. I am sure we all know this story. Joseph was his father’s favorite son out of 13 sons. His brothers grew jealous, threw him into a pit to die then decided to sell him away as a slave. But Joseph trusted in God and God blessed him. He eventually grew to be the first in command in the pharaohs home. Now if there is anyone who is allowed to feel anger, it is Joseph. It would be hard to choose love over anger if someone tried to kill you, then sold you to be a slave…especially when those who hurt you are family. But, Joseph chose to hold his head high, look at his brothers face to face and forgive them. He chose to bless them. He chose to take them in despite what they had done to him. He chose love over anger. Although God gave us this emotion of anger to feel, to experience, He never intends for us to dwell in it. Just like Joseph, we are to forgive and choose love.
The fruits of the spirit are love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). I don’t see anger mixed in there anywhere, do you? I see good things. Things that will help us to grow and prosper. Things that keep us safe from falling too far down. God has given us these beautiful feelings and emotions as well. You see, He gave us all these emotions, but He also left it up to us (gave us free will) to know when to forgive and move on.
It would be so easy to get mad about everything that this life throws at us to trip us up. There is so much to make that happen. But if we were to get angry about every little thing and hold on to that anger, we would miss out on all the wonderful things God does for us every day. We need to know when to say enough is enough and give up the anger. God paid the ultimate price for us to live this life. He was scorned, mocked, beaten, and hung on a cross when he easily could have saved himself from all that pain and anguish, He chose not to so that we might have the opportunity to be saved and live a good life. So, if there is anyone who deserves to feel anger towards someone it would be Jesus. But as he hung there on the cross, with his last breaths he says, “God forgive them for they do not know what they do.” He asks God to forgive us. I don’t know about you, but if I was beaten and mocked and hung on a cross, I would not want to ask forgiveness for those who were doing those things to me. But that is what makes God so good. He is full of love, grace, mercy and so much more. And He feels all of those things towards us even though we are sinners, and we fail and fall. How can He do that, you might ask? For one, He is God, and His ways are higher than our ways, but also because He chooses to love in spite of our sin. God gives us this same gift. It is one that might be really hard at times to do. But God has put it in us to have the courage and strength to overcome any anger that might build up. Love is the greatest of all of the fruits of the spirit. Therefore, love has the power to overcome anything, any anger, any sadness, and hurt, if we choose to use it. Love is a superpower that we hold in our hearts. We may not use it as often as we should, so today I challenge us to choose love over anger. Once we choose love over anger once, and then again, then again, it starts to get a little easier.
He gives us Roots so we can Fly. Roots and Wings.