Sunday, February 8, 2009

When Anger Becomes Sin

Let's look at the anger cycle from the feeling of anger to it becoming a sin.
  • Ready - Feeling
  • Aim - Thinking
  • Fire - Acting
When the "feeling" begins - stop and ask yourself, "Why am I feeling like this?"
Let's go back to Cain:
  • Cain Blamed Abel for God's disapproval
  • Cain felt anger
  • God asked him "why" he was angry
  • God already knew but He wanted Cain to acknowledge it
  • Cain never dealt with the real issue of why he was angry
Cain was in the ready position (feelings) he was angry - but he hadn't taken aim or fired yet. God tried to warn him. God gave him an opportunity to think, but he didn't listen, instead Cain allowed the anger to become sin.

To successfully deal with anger we must always first honestly answer the question God asked of Cain, "Why are you angry?"

Anger is the result of four other emotions:
  • Hurt
  • Fear
  • Frustration
  • Injustice
It looks like this:

Someone offends you
You feel one of the above emotions
This turns to the feeling of anger
You begin to think about what to say to them
You begin to tell others about the offense
You feel uncomfortable around that person now
You begin to distance yourself from them
You now have resentment toward them
Anger has now become Bitterness

The bitterness is now too uncomfortable to hold in so you may lash out or gossip or withhold relationship in an effort to punish them. Unforgiveness can creep in which leads to broken relationships, destroyed trust and deep roots of resentment.

The thing most people fail to realize is - the person who is most hurt when we get to this point is the person who is angry. It is exhausting to live with anger and bitterness.

This is what the word says we should do:

"Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of malicious behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you." Ephesians 4:31,32

Next Post: What is the Solution? How to Heal from an Angry Heart.

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