Proud men …. are not angry men (1)
I stop at a red traffic light, just to be hooted at because I did not take the chance to drive over the orange light so that “he” behind me can also cross. As an extra gift, I have to absorb some kind of hand sign.
I get out of my car at a shop and hear a man swearing loudly at someone on the phone about how poorly his car has been cleaned.
I see two people playing a sport. The next moment the one wanted to attack the other because he believed he was cheated.
I stand at the braai and hear men thrashing the government for the financial situation in the country. They say nothing good and sound sick and tired of the situation.
I read about the recent spate of robberies in our area and ‘hear’ the anger of the innocent.
I listen to comments about the level of fraud in our companies and the government and see hard working men become frustrated men.
I hear the anger due to the impact of empowerment processes on men (of all colours) when others are given jobs and promotions and they are not even considered because they do not fit the “look”.
I listen to the issues around things like ‘Covid-19 laws’ and ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘corruption’ and ‘illegal immigrants’ and ‘farm murders’ and see responses from all sides. And mostly, the responses are filled with anger.
Angry men………all around me.
It is not a problem
to recognise all the things around us that we believe are unfair and just simply wrong.
when we talk about it and make efforts to change it for the better of all of us.
to talk about what is wrong so that things can be done to rectify it.
or even to become angry with the situation or situations.
What is a problem is allowing yourself to become an angry man because of this. The anger itself is less of an issue than how we behave when we get angry.
What is a problem, is when
Anger takes over control of your thinking, your emotions and even your physical body.
Anger makes you say and do things that you normally would not do.
Anger makes you a bitter man.
I believe this is why men swear, shout, throw signs and even become physically abusive towards others. They lose control of their own behaviour when they give over to anger.
Recognise the anger, recognise the reasons for the anger, but do not give yourself over to it, do not be an angry man.
God does not promote anger, especially because it can end up badly so quickly, and He warns us:
Ps 4:4 In your anger, do not sin
Eph 4:26 Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry
Once we realise that our response to the anger we feel is the problem, we just need to know how to prevent this ‘handing-over’ of control when we get angry.
To do this, it may be important to figure out why we are angry.
Read Acts 16:16 – 38 about Paul and Silas being thrown into prison for preaching the Gospel. They were chained inside the prison after being beaten. They had all reason to be angry, valid reasons. They could be angry with the Romans for treating them like this, angry about the injustice, angry about the uncontrollable situation, even angry at God allowing this unfair treatment. And maybe they even were, since they were normal men like us all.
Yet, they did not just submit to the anger, but decided to sing hymns and pray and praise God. Even whilst being chained, beaten, tired, hurt, probably hungry as well.
How could they do this? I believe it is because of a few simple things:
They did not see themselves as more important than any other person and thus did not expect special treatment. People have acted unfairly to others before and will again, and there is no reason why it should not happen to them as well.......and they accepted that.
They believed that God will ensure justice, that He will make sure that what has to happen, will. They believed He is in control no matter what is happening around them and to them....and they accepted that.
Because they accepted that they are not more special than others and God is in control, they could give control of their feelings over to Him and allow Him to control their behaviour.
What happened after this?
They earth shook and the chains fell off their arms and ankles and the prison doors opened.
Go now and think about your anger.
Do what Paul and Silas did. Trust Him to do what He wills.
May you then experience that the chains of anger that bind you, fall off and allow you to be free. Really free.
Let your chains of anger be removed.
In the next blog, we will take this further.