You’ve heard the phrase: “Be the person you want to meet.”
You’re probably looking for someone who is not easily angered, right? So, be that person.
Like so many other things in life, this is easier said than done. But if we want to be healthy and successful people, it’s important that we do what’s right and not what’s easy.
None of us plan on being an angry person. The problem is that we don’t plan on being NOT easily angered. It’s usually a thing we struggle with in the heat of the moment and frequently fail by going ballistic.
Since anger is an emotion we humans all experience, we need to learn how to control it. Here’s a plan on “How to be Not Easily Angered”
REALIZE I can control my anger
Responding in anger is a choice. Nothing and nobody can make me do or say certain things out of anger. It’s my choice. I need to choose now that I will not give in to anger. If I wait until I’m in the heat of the moment, I’ll get burned and blow up.
So it’s time for me to stop making excuses and start accepting responsibility for my reactions. In life, I can’t control everything that happens to me but I can always control my reaction to what happens to me.
REMEMBER THE COST of my uncontrolled anger
When I get angry, there’s always a price tag. The Bible is very clear about this in Proverbs 29:22 (NLT) “…a hot-tempered person commits all kinds of sin.” A few of these sins include…
- Arguments – “A hot-tempered person starts fights…” Proverbs 15:18 (NLT)
- Mistakes – “…one who is quick-tempered displays folly.” Proverbs 14:29 (NIV)
- Foolishness – “Short-tempered people do foolish things…” Proverbs 14:17 (NLT)
I always lose when I lose my temper. Anger creates more anger, produces apathy, and alienates people. Nothing destroys relationships faster than anger.
REFLECT BEFORE REACTING in anger
I need to think before I speak. Anger control in mostly a matter of mouth control. I can’t put my foot in my mouth when my mouth is closed. Proverbs 29:11 (NLT) instructs, “Fools vent their anger, but the wise quietly hold it back.” It’s important for me to not respond impulsively.
I need to reflect before reacting. Proverbs 19:11 (NLT) reveals that, “Sensible people control their temper…” I can tame my temper by pausing before I react. So, what should I do when I pause? Pray. Pause and pray. Psalm 141:3 (NLT) is a great prayer to say when you begin getting angry, “Take control of what I say, O Lord, and guard my lips.”
Also, I should try to understand why I’m getting angry, because there is always something going on underneath the surface. Have I been hurt emotionally or physically? Am I frustrated or irritated? Am I afraid or feeling attacked? As you think through the ‘why’, you’ll be able to pray more specifically.
BONUS: Do you know the #1 cause of reacting before reflecting? Read Proverbs 20:1 for the answer.
RELEASE MY ANGER APPROPRIATELY
There’s a right way and a wrong way to release my anger. It can either be helpful or harmful (Tweet It!)
Harmful ways include repressing it by pretending I’m not angry, suppressing it by pushing it down inside me and not sharing my feelings, and expressing it inappropriately through sarcasm, manipulation, attacking, pouting, or sinful behavior.
Anger is contagious. It affects others and gets me angrier. Proverbs 15:1 (NLT) gives words to live by, “A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.”
The helpful way to release my anger is to confess it to God. Admit to Him that I’m angry and why. I need to be open and honest with my Creator and Healer.
REPATTERN MY mind
The way I express anger is a learned response. My parents and others modeled it to me, and I model it to others. The good news is that it can be unlearned.
Romans 12:2 (NLT) says, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”
I ACT angry because I FEEL angry. I feel angry because I THINK angry. I need to change the way I think. I need God to transform my mind. This happens through prayer, Bible reading, and Scripture memorization.
RELY ON GOD’S HELP
The most important component of not being easily angered is trusting God. He needs to be first place in my life. When a sponge is squeezed, what comes out is what’s on the inside. When I’m squeezed, what comes out of me is what’s inside of me.
Matthew 12:34 (NLT) points out the root cause of my anger, “…For whatever is in your heart determines what you say.” The heart of the problem is the problem of the heart. I need God’s love inside me.
I often pray David’s prayer in Psalm 51:10 (NLT), “Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me.”
Here’s a prayer you may want to pray:
Heavenly Father, I admit that I have a problem with how I handle my anger and I need Your help. Today with Your help, I am committing to practice controlling my anger. I’m aware that my anger has hurt others and that it hurts me. Help me to reflect before reacting. Help me to learn to release my anger appropriately. Help me to repattern my mind. Jesus, I’m relying on Your help. Today I open up my life completely to You. Please come into my life and save me and change me. Make the changes that only you can make. I trust you as my Forgiver and Leader.
Comment below: In what ways have you seen anger impact relationships?
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