“REED ALL ABOUT IT!” Thursday, June 14, 2015

Climbing the Mountain of Anger ‒“Be angry, and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil.” Ephesians 4:26-27


            May 16, 1894; Baltimore Orioles came to Boston to play a routine baseball game. But what happened that day was anything but routine. John McGraw, then with the Baltimore Orioles, got in a fight with the Boston third baseman. Soon both teams were battling and the warfare erupted on the field and then spread to the stands. Among the fans, the conflict went from bad to worse. The stands were set on fire and the entire ballpark burned to the ground, as well as 170 other Boston buildings. The memories were so bitter from this incident that McGraw’s National League winning Giants refused to play the World Series in 1904 because it would have been against the American League champion Boston Braves.

            It started as a game of baseball–two players got into a fight–it erupted into an angry firestorm–all because of uncontrolled anger.

            How about you? What makes you angry? What happens when you get angry? How do you respond to people around you? Do you say things you shouldn’t say or didn’t mean to say? A lady once came to Billy Sunday and tried to rationalize her angry outbursts. “There’s nothing wrong with losing my temper. I blow up, and then it’s all over.”

            “So does a shotgun,” Sunday replied, “and look at the damage it leaves behind!”

            In his book, Slaying the Giants in Your Life, David Jeremiah writes about a world full of angry people:  “The world is an angry place. Who can say why the word rage has developed so many qualifiers? . . . You need only to pick up your morning newspaper to read about the following manifestations actually credited in news stories:  road rage, parking rage, air rage, boat rage, surf rage, fishing rage, river rage, pedestrian rage, pavement rage, jogger rage, biker rage, trucker rage, cell phone rage, shopping rage, grocery cart rage, and checkout rage. I’m told there’s such thing as pew rage, though I haven’t actually witnessed it at our church–yet. Getting angry can sometimes be like leaping into a wonderfully responsive sports car, gunning the motor, taking off at high speed and then discovering the brakes are out of order. We need to learn to control our anger.”

            We’ve all done things we’ve wished we could reverse. We’ve broken something or said something or done something, and we’ve wished we could rewind the film of life and reverse the damage.  Here are a few suggestions to help you control your anger:


1. If someone makes you angry ‒ offer love in return

2. Instead of retaliation ‒ offer redemption

3. Grace isn’t the natural way to behave; it’s the supernatural way

4. Have a forgiving spirit ‒ the person who has a problem with anger

has a deeper problem with unforgiveness. It’s that unforgiving spirit  

that keeps feeding anger

5. Rely on God the Holy Spirit

6. Renounce the devil. Don’t give him a place in your heart to operate


A LITTLE HUMOR:  A high school student asked his father to help him write a composition on how wars start. “Well, now, let’s suppose we get into a quarrel with Canada,” his father began.

“That’s ridiculous,” his mother interrupted. “Why should we quarrel with Canada?”

“That’s beside the point,” her husband said. “I was merely using an example.”

“If you had an ounce of brains you wouldn’t use such stupid examples,” replied the mother.

“Who do you think you’re talking to?” shouted the father. “I want to teach my son . . .”

“YOUR son!” the mother screamed. “I suppose I had nothing to do with his being here. You just found him someplace . . .”

“Please, folks,” the boy pleaded. “Forget it. I just figured it out for myself.”