Why So Many Angry People Part 1 — Morning Devotions - Hope 103.2

Why So Many Angry People Part 1 — Morning Devotions

We all deal with anger in different ways. Anger isn't always a bad thing, but it needs to be anger under control.

By Chris WittsThursday 21 Apr 2022Morning Devotions with Chris WittsDevotionsReading Time: 1 minute

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Have you noticed how angry people are becoming these days? Maybe since the Covid-19 came, I’m not sure. But anger and negative behaviour seems to surround us all the time. Who can forget the TV images of supermarket shoppers yelling abuse as they tried to buy up the last toilet rolls? And there are many other examples of people losing their cool.

The New York Times ran a story on this theme and explain what happened in a small takeaway franchise in Massachusetts. The staff worked hard despite the covid restrictions to satisfy their customers. But the queues one day got quite long, and one frustrated group of customers paid for their meal, ordered it to be boxed up. Then they threw the uneaten food into a waste bin, yelling their displeasure and walking out. The owner of the restaurant said to the reporter, “It’s like abuse. People are always rude to restaurant workers, but this far exceeds anything I’ve seen in my 20 years.”

Now what’s going on here? It seems like everywhere we turn, someone is angry at something. Why is everyone so angry all the time? Now we all get angry, but we do deal with it in different ways. Some people lash out in frustration or they silently stew about it or they complain about it to other people. Some people repress their anger with the idea that they feel guilty, they shouldn’t feel anger, that it is not safe. And others seethe quietly until they explode. Some of us do all those things.

I’m not saying that all anger is wrong. There are times we need to make a point. It may lead to anger, but it needs to be anger under control, not out of control. Emotions are what makes us human, and anger is definitely a part of the human experience. Try to identify what it is that’s making you angry and work towards living a more balanced, happier life. And when you hold on to your anger, you prevent yourself from being happy or positive, because your negative feelings block out everything else. If you don’t deal with your anger in a positive way, then over time it’ll just build up and become your primary emotion. And that can cause to all sorts of personal problems. So maybe we can learn something here learning to control anger before it controls you.

Isn’t it interesting that anger can and will surface at the strangest times brought forth for the strangest of reasons? Challenging, isn’t it? Because anger, if it’s not handled properly, can be a very dangerous and destructive emotion. It can be hurtful to us physically, emotionally, relationally and spiritually.

There is an intriguing Bible verse in the Old Testament.
In Proverbs 25 it says, if you cannot control yourself and your emotions, you’re as helpless as a city without walls open to attack. The feelings of anger, hostility or even rage can affect anyone. Where is my anger coming from? I’m sure this is the basic question to ask. Maybe your parents were angry with you, and you grew up not knowing how to deal with your own anger.

But the Bible does affirm that when we cannot control our anger, we’re in a dangerous place, like living in a city without protective walls. I was reading the other day about the Bible’s first recorded murder, Cain murdering his brother Abel in this unprecedented act of jealousy and rage in Genesis 4. You can read it yourself.

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God rejected Cain’s offering. He preferred Abel’s offering,
and Cain was furious. And God said to him, Why are you angry? What’s that scowl on your face? If you’ve done the right thing, you’d be smiling. Sin is crouching at your door and Cain asked Abel to go out into the field where he killed him. It is a tragic story, and it tells me that without a trust in God, we can easily take matters into our own hands. This sort of anger can be a very scary experience, but asking God to fill you with his Holy Spirit will help you stay calm and steady and to receive His peace. Our anger can keep us from being the people that God wants us to be.

The epistle of James (James 1:19-21) says, “everyone must be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. Human anger does not
achieve God’s righteous purpose. Submit to God and accept the word that he plants in your heart.”

And then in Ephesians 4:26 it says, “and don’t sin by letting anger gain control over you. Don’t let the sun go down while you’re still angry for anger gives a mighty
foothold to the devil.”

God has given us His Word and His spirit to work in us and to take control over our anger. So anger, when it’s managed correctly, can be an asset and not a liability. It’s something we can’t avoid, but it’s something we can learn to control.

Heavenly Father, there are many angry people around, and that could include me. Lord, may you give me your peace
and a settling down, Lord, that I can handle all things calmly and in your strength.