I judge that most of us have used the expression, “You made me…”
We tend to hold others accountable for our outbursts, our shouts, our screams, our foul moods, our cursing, our “losing it.” In other words, “it’s your fault that I reacted as I did.”
We fail to recognize that our actions, our reactions, are all choices!
We may not be fully conscience of them, especially when some moron cuts us off on the road and we were inches away from getting into an accident, just because this person is in a rush or feels entitled to drive this recklessly!
Not that I have ever been in this situation, of course. Much less yelled and maybe even cursed…not I, said the cat! 😉
But yes, even in those type of quick, blink-of-an-eye situations, we have a choice in how we respond.
I will confess that it is much easier in those moments to give-in to the anger, to the frustration. It feels momentarily satiating and quite satisfying! But, only for a moment, for after the scarlet-coated emotion has subsided, we are able to see the casualties of our anger…
Our loved ones’ hurt feelings (if we are lucky, that is all we have hurt), a hole in the wall, broken dishes, broken phones, a scratch, or shocked faces of those who observed our wrath.
What about those deep-rooted offenses? The betrayals? The back-stabbing? The underhanded conniving schemes? The bitter disappointment of relationship, of a friend, of a family member?
The hurt, the anger can run deep. There may even be hatred!
How do we avoid this? How do we choose how to act? How to react? How to respond?
We must look to Him who offers us His Grace, His Strength, we must look to Him Who has suffered beatings and humiliations on our account. If anyone can show us, teach us, how to respond, it is He.
Oh and I know it is in no way easy! It is easier to drown in our anger. To suffocate in our hurt. To wallow in self-pity. To want them to hurt as much as we do!
But…do you not want to be free of those feelings and memories that enslave us? That torment us? That torture us with constant reminders and bitterness?
Then we must resolve to not allow anyone this power over us. We must resolve to be a people of Light,a people of Joy!
Refrain from anger; abandon wrath; do not be provoked; it brings only harm.
Those who do evil will be cut off, but those who wait for the LORD will inherit the earth.
~ Psalm 37:8-9
We must look to Him, to His examples, to His Words. For if you commit the mistake that man has made throughout the ages of self-sufficiency, I guarantee, you will fail. We all have.
Even if you are angry, do not sin: never let the sun set on your anger or else you will give the devil a foothold.
Anyone who was a thief must stop stealing; instead he should exert himself at some honest job with his own hands so that he may have something to share with those in need.
No foul word should ever cross your lips; let your words be for the improvement of others, as occasion offers, and do good to your listeners; do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God who has marked you with his seal, ready for the day when we shall be set free.
Any bitterness or bad temper or anger or shouting or abuse must be far removed from you — as must every kind of malice. Be generous to one another, sympathetic, forgiving each other as readily as God forgave you in Christ.
~ Ephisians 4:26-32
We need supernatural strength, supernatural resolve…supernatural, unending, unconditional, eternally waiting Love…
Those with good sense are slow to anger, and it is their glory to overlook an offense.
Crux Sancta Sit Mihi Lux †