addresses the danger of harboring anger.
Be angry and do not sin;
do not let the sun go down on your anger,
and give no opportunity to the devil.
As I read through the author's comments on the results of harboring anger, I knew there have been times when I went to bed angry. Even Jesus was occasionally angry-it is a very real human emotion. Anger in itself is not the culprit, the unwillingness to let go of anger is the invitation to Satan to take our thoughts captive. Even righteous anger can, with time, eventually steam and boil over. Our refusal to let go of anger--leads to hurt feelings, jealousy, outrage, hatred--all staggering fruits of offense. Anger eventually leads to the planting of bitterness in our hearts and bitterness always bears rotten fruit.
We live in an angry world. Turn on the news--ANY TIME--you will hear the consequences of anger. People are shouting at each other, name calling, rude, and down right belligerent to each other. No longer are we able to peacefully agree to disagree. We all take it personal when someone dares to disagree with our opinion. It starts at the top and trickles down. We not only go to bed angry, we are guilty of enjoying our anger and feeding it through all forms of media. The enemy is delighted in our war of words--for you see it takes our time and attention away from the truly important--that with eternal consequences. We demand grace, but extend judgement.
"Anger is often based on a distortion of the facts-a misrepresentation about the details of whatever situation ignited it and a skewed perception about the truth of who God is and who we are in Him. We've forgotten that we are accepted in Him no matter what others think or say. That we, as infinitely worse offenders against Him have still been the recipients of His grace. And that as His children, becoming more like Him each day, we should extend grace to others."
Gut check time--are you harboring anger? There are no exceptions to our need to extend forgiveness. God has not picked and chosen what He is willing to forgive us---He forgives it all. Why then do we think we are given a pass on our unwillingness to forgive? Have we allowed anger to become an idol--a golden calf? Do we go to bed angry and give the enemy a toehold? Is your fruit bitter?