Summary: How to control our anger

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Sermon Number 4

January 17, 2010

Today is the big game. I have some concerns about today’s game for a couple of reasons. First, I am a little nervous about the Jets coming in and winning. The Colts opened the door for them, and they might just walk through. No matter the outcome of the game, there will be angry people. I just hope the Colts win!!

The 2nd reason I am concerned is because I will be watching the game with my sister and the rest of my family. You see, I grew up watching the Chicago Bears play football. When we weren’t at the game, we were sitting in my parents living room watching the games. It was my dad, Janet and me. We didn’t stop talking the whole game, we analyzed plays, hooped and hollered at the good, the bad and the ugly. We yelled, we argued, we disagreed, and we got angry. So, I hope today goes well, the Colts dominate the game, and Janet agrees with everything I say.

Now, on to the real talk about anger. Today, we’ll finish, even if it takes an hour, we’ll be done with anger, and move on to talking about forgiveness next week.

As a quick recap from last week, I reminded you that we can become very Hulkish when we become angry. We change from one type of person, a calm, sweet, seemingly normal person, into something that nobody can recognize. This dramatic change occurs because we’ve never learned how to manage our anger.

As we look at ways to manage our anger, we’ll look at 5 different steps which I believe will help us. I mentioned the first 2 steps last week.

The first step is RECOGNIZE YOU ARE ANGRY.

This seems like a no-brainer. Yet, if we cannot recognize when we are angry, then we will not be able to manage how we handle that anger. If you can’t admit you’re angry, then you will never be able to manage it in healthy ways. And your anger will have a dramatic impact upon others, especially those you love and who love you. Even passive-aggressive or anger avoidance can make you look Hulkish.

Proverbs 15:1 reminds us - 1A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. You can’t give a gentle answer if you aren’t in touch with what you are feeling at that moment.

This is the most vital step. No matter how you display your anger, you need to know your triggers. So the first step in managing our anger is becoming aware of it and admitting we experience anger.

Secondly, and along with recognizing your anger, UNDERSTAND WHY YOU GET ANGRY.

The better you understand yourself, the better you’ll be able to control your anger. Anger is simply a warning light. It isn’t your real problem. It says that something much deeper is wrong.

We become angry for one of four basic reasons:

1. We fear something or someone.

- Abuse, people who intimidate, dark places, closeness.

2. We have lost something we value.

- Gossip (friendship), a cherished ring

3. We are frustrated over a situation.

- building something, being late, playing a sport poorly

4. We feel inconvenienced about a situation.

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