Most of our anger is connected to ourselves. James warns us that ‘human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.’ (James 1:19) It is right to be angry on behalf of the oppressed, to fight for justice and fairness and to oppose injustice and corruption, but more often than not, our anger is fuelled by a sense of personal hurt and damage. We lash out at others because we feel threatened or humiliated and we blow up because we are personally wounded.
This kind of anger damages us (often causing physical illnesses) and others (who may feel they cannot be honest with us because they fear our explosive reactions.) It wrecks relationships and leaves people at odds with each other. Paul warns us not to sin when we are angry and gives us good advice: ‘Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.’ (Eph 4:26) Letting go of anger is important; seeking reconciliation with those we have hurt is also important.
Many people feel their anger is justified and therefore want to hold on to it. It gives them a sense of importance and a feeling of righteousness. There is, however, greater freedom in letting go of anger and learning the better way of love.
Silhouette of bird flying and broken chains at beautiful mountain sunset background