"Then I'll huff, and I'll puff, and I'll blow your house in.” ~The Big Bad Wolf
2020 should be named “The Year Anger Blew Up the Country.”
Everywhere you look, anger seems to spew like a volcanic eruption leaving a trail of devastation in its wake.
Heck, The Big Bad Wolf from the classic fable- The Three Little Pigs should be this year’s mascot.
Huffing and puffing and literally blowing houses down!
Maybe we all need to stop, take a deep breath, and look in the mirror.
Have we sprouted hair, grown fangs, and blowing hot air destroying everything around us?
If you have turned into a Big Bad Wolf or know someone who has- don’t lose hope there is help and it comes by way of a simple exercise of introspection.
Know your ABCDs:
A- Acknowledge (admit and accept) the anger
The first step is to recognize and admit you are angry. It’s Ok to be angry, it is a God-given emotion.
B- Backtrack to the primary emotion
Anger is always a secondary emotion. It’s the warning light that says something isn’t quite right. There is a root cause: injustice, hurt, frustration, insecurity, unmet need or expectation, jealousy, envy, or bitterness. What is the real emotion?
C- Consider the cause
Who are you really angry with? Yourself, others, the situation, or God?
D- Determine how best to deal with this emotion
Trust me- blowing your cool, rioting, vandalizing property, verbally abusing, and physically assaulting others is NOT the answer. Honestly, you are a fool if you think any of these things will actually make things better.
Anger is a choice.
The worst thing you can do is act like the Big Bad Wolf and explode, yell, scream, belittle, and attack.
Don't you realize that uncontrolled anger destroys yourself, your relationship with others and most importantly, your relationship with God?
Wise people know that calmer heads prevail and are smart enough to know there are better ways to handle anger- especially righteous anger.
So, when you are faced with an immediate onslaught of anger, I would highly recommend heeding James 1:19-20:
“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”
Quick to Hear: Our immediate response should be “receptive listening” and not “reactionary responding.” We should be asking ourselves, “What is this anger telling me?”
Slow to Speak: Our interim response should be “THINK BEFORE WE SPEAK." Asking ourselves, "What must I do to prevent a knee-jerk response?"
Slow to Anger: Our final life-changing response begins by replacing "reaction" with "reflection." (ABCDs come in handy for this one!)
Remember- It isn’t wrong to feel angry- it’s what you do with it that matters.
Don’t blow it- change begins with you!
(For more on this topic- see Chip Ingram’s Podcasts- Turning Anger from a Foe to a Friend from his series Overcoming Emotions that Destroy)
Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.
~ Ecclesiastes 7:9