Anger is not always hot and explosive; there are those whose anger is manifested in coldness. I know someone whose reaction when angry is to cease talking to the one who has angered him; he becomes resentful and his anger is manifested in what is known as the ‘cold shoulder’. Resentment is a festering sore, anger in the deep freeze, so to speak. The Bible tells us that bitter roots cause trouble and defile many people (Heb 12:15). Job commented that ‘resentment kills a fool, and envy slays the simple.’ (Job 5:2)

Resentment is defined as ‘a bitter indignation at having been treated unfairly.’ We can’t necessarily stop unfair treatment. What we can do, however, is control our response to it. We can choose to let go of resentment because ultimately we trust God to right wrongs and sort things out on our behalf. Joseph is a classic example of someone who could have lived in resentment at the way he had been treated: his brothers envied him and sold him into slavery; he was imprisoned unjustly and forgotten about by those he had helped. Yet instead of holding on to resentment, he chose to trust God to bring about restoration, which God did in His own time.

When we let go of resentment, we allow God to mould our hearts into trustful obedience.