We all have moments where we get angry… if we’re sane. Anger is a healthy emotion that’s a gift to protect ourselves and those we love when there’s a threat. The problem is when we forget that emotions need to be guarded by logic. Emotions are wonderful, but when left on their own they can leave us screaming at people who take too long to order their coffee or crying in front of friends when we go to take a sip of our drink but forget to open our mouths causing the drink to spill down our shirt… yes, I’ve managed that brilliant move before… just without the crying… well my friends started crying with laughter at me, but that’s different. Emotions are wonderful, but we need to keep them in line because in protecting ourselves we can hurt others. If you have problems with anger like a normal person does from time to time here’s a wonderful tool to help. Before you react with anger, stop and ask yourself: What am I angry about and should I be? Yes, this helps prevent us from just reacting on impulse, but it also helps us filter through the situation because sometimes we want to be angry, but have no real right to be. The other week my wife and I were doing a couples night with my brother and sister-in-law. I have always gotten along well with my brother and the only fights we had as children involved me beating him up… that was the one benefit of being the fat brother. As adults, for the past twelve years we’ve done a weekly work out together, which gives a good indication of how well we get along. On our couple’s night, my wife and I went to his house. It was a great visit and we decided to conclude the evening by watching a movie. He offered a few they had, but I suggested we rent something… you know, the thing almost no one does anymore, but is still way better than flipping through Netflix lists. My brother and I went to the store, I let him pick a movie he wanted to see since he never rents anything, and then when we went to pay we both pulled out our wallets. Here’s the thing, I only pulled out my wallet because that’s the nice thing to do… so I thought. I ended up paying. That was not the point of me pulling out my wallet; you know, because I’m cheap and partially rude but that’s a fact I want to conceal. In my head I was thinking he’s letting me pay? What a jerk. I was getting ready to bring back my 8 year old bully self and have a throw down, but fortunately before I reacted I quickly did the check: “What am I angry about? I had to pay $4, a whole 4 dollars for a movie he wanted when we are at his house and he’s supposed to be the host. Should I be angry? Absolutely not. For one, it’s $4. Two, I pulled out my wallet so I set myself up. Three, I should be grateful to give him something because of all he’s done for me this past year. He wrote and performed my wedding ceremony despite the stress it caused him. He was always quick to come to my house to help whether it was taking out a chimney or twice helping hand mix 30 bags of concrete because I was too cheap to rent a mixer. Plus, he’s driven me to the gym for all the years we’ve worked out together. Fortunately, I’ve learned to keep my emotions in check because otherwise I would’ve hurt someone whom I should be doing all the more for because he’s done so much for me. Emotions are great for protecting us, but sometimes they get carried away. Fortunately, God has blessed us with both emotions and logic, so let’s try to use them properly.
This week may you learn to better control your anger in order to protect both yourself and those around you.
Rev Chad David, www.ChadDavid.ca, learning to love dumb people