Sunday, April 14, 2013

When Unreasonable Anger Cannot See What Is Reasonable

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret—it leads only to evil.

Psalm 37:8
New International Version (NIV)

       Sometimes we need to listen more closely to what others are telling us.  We might think we know the story and have all of the answers, but we know the story from our side and may be blinded by our own perceptions.

        This past week someone became very angry with me and seemed to insinuate that I had been dishonest or irresponsible.  I tried several times to calmly explain where they were in error and that I had not done anything wrong.  The person refused to listen to my reasoning and very logical explanation and spoke angrily at me.  I was very hurt, but I kept calm and continued to explain my position in different ways.

        I had all the facts and figures right in front of us.  The person I was dealing with continued to lash out at me and say things that they knew would cut me deeply.  Then, after a moment of silence as the person looked at the data I was presenting, that person suddenly realized that I had been right.  But by then the damage had been done.

        The person apologized and I accepted.   But I was very hurt and the hurt remained with me.  This person had every reason to trust me and I could not understand why the anger was unleashed.  What was said was unnecessary and unfair and it's another thing from that person that will stay inside of me.  I do not hold onto my anger, but my hurt is difficult to release.  

        I don't know if this person has learned from this or will find another reason to attack me in the future.  I hope there have been lessons learned.  I hope any future anger will be stemmed and result in loving dialogue. Most of all I pray that I can keep my composure and not resort to reflexive anger.  Two angry people can lead to nothing good.

        There is so much in our lives to be thankful for.  When the relatively trivial comes into play we need to calmly reason through it and think about what keeps relationships strong.   If we're talking about a little nuisance then don't fret it.

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.

James 1:19-20

New International Version (NIV)

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  1. It's hard not to be angry when someone you know or even love hurts you, especially when you know deep in your heart what they are saying is totally untrue. I have lived in HOPE for over 2 years for my eldest son to get in touch with me after writing the most abusive text one could send let alone to a mother. My daughter has gone down the same road as he has and it's almost a year since I last heard from her. Keith my brother who you met with me in LA went to visit her and was told that her childhood was ruined because I was always ill. I was diagnosed with epilepsy when she was 12 years old, she has bore a grudge all this time about that even getting married without telling me.So I have suffered twice......having epilepsy and losing a daughter because of it. The hurt is very deep.


    1. Wow, that is so sad. Why on earth someone would blame you over an illness that you have no control over is beyond comprehension. Hopefully eventually they will see the error of their ways.

  2. You share an important truth here, Arlee--words do have power, both to encourage and to cause pain. I am praying God will heal your hurt.

  3. We experienced something similar with a family member two years ago, and while apologies were made and accepted the words still kind of resound in my head now and then. We are in a pretty good place with this person now, but it has taken time. Words can be forgiven, but not unsaid. I wise words from James!

  4. You can't know how much I appreciate this post, Lee. Not long ago, someone lashed out at me in so much anger, I didn't quite know what to do. Since it was an online friend, I ended up disengaging as much as possible. Writing helped with my own emotions; I can completely understand how this must have caught you by surprise, thus prompting and inspiring this post. There are times when we need to get angry. How we handle that anger is completely up to us. Hurt is another story entirely. Thank you for this post.


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