Summary: When jealousy or anger rears its ugly head, what do we do? The story of Cain provides us with some valuable answers.
A woman testified to the transformation in her life that had resulted through her experience in conversion. She declared, "I’m so glad I found Jesus. I have an uncle I used to hate so much I vowed I’d never go to his funeral. But now, why, I’d be happy to go to it any time."
Have you ever felt that way about someone? For some the older they get the more they struggle with anger. Maybe its because you grow tired sooner, or maybe its because you don’t slow down enough and learn to be still. But somehow anger grows.
I tried to figure out why anger is so easy to become our friend.
Here are a few…
Reasons We Are Angry
1. We’re self-centered. Like a child who can’t have their way they’re going to take their ball and go home. There are some areas we don’t care if we have our way, but the arenas that are our passion, when we don’t get our way then, watch out. That selfishness can rear its ugly head in the form of anger.
2. We get hurt and anger is our source of protection. We build up this tough guy wall and keep people at a distance with anger so we don’t have to risk getting hurt. It’s easier to be lonely and mad than to have friends and be betrayed.
3. We grow angry because we’re overbooked. We cut more string away from an already short fuse and we reach our explosion point sooner. We think we can add more to our rushed lives and stilled be able to find control.
4. Anger is part of our life because the life we have isn’t the life we expected. Our kids aren’t turning out as we had hoped. Maybe you’re not married to the person you thought you were marrying. Your job is stressful. Your health is not good. Your debt load is too high. Gas prices are high. Life just isn’t what we had hoped it would be and you find yourself frustrated.
After spending 3-1/2 hours enduring long lines, rude clerks and insane regulations at the Department of Motor Vehicles, Glenn Vaughan stopped at a toy store to pick up a gift for his son. “I brought my selection - a baseball bat - to the cash register,” he said. "Cash or charge?" the clerk asked. "Cash," He snapped. Then apologizing for his rudeness, he explained, "I’ve spent the entire afternoon at the motor vehicle bureau." The woman sweetly replied, "shall I gift-wrap the bat…or are you going back there?"
5. Why do husbands grow angry with their wives and why do wives become angry with their husbands? Why do we get so angry when someone else receives the attention? It is the fifth reason, We don’t receive the attention we want. Anger turns to jealousy then.
How does this happen? You aren’t an attention seeker, but you do want attention from the ones you love. Maybe you don’t get jealous over another person’s success. I don’t get jealous when someone else is invited to speak somewhere where I would like to speak…but when the ones I love…the ones that possess my heart don’t give me the level of attention I think I need…my little feelings get hurt and I get jealous.
Jealousy has an ugly head. It wants to be made to feel special. That’s why young mothers have a difficult time when they give all of their needed attention and energy to young children in the home…the poor little husband has his ego hurt and he grows jealous of the children. But the same is true of a young husband or wife starting out in a career. They pour their energy and attention into their career wanting to make a difference and to be successful and their spouse grows jealous of their work because they have lost attention. The job, or the child, or the golf game appears to be more special than the spouse is. And we all want to feel special don’t we?
We want to have something special that is just yours. If you and your children have a special game you play and it’s all yours, it is what gives you identity with your kids and then some other person steps in and plays the same game with them, you’re stung and a little jealous.
Have you ever said or heard your spouse say, “Why don’t you get something done around here?” “This place is always a mess.” “Can’t you accomplish anything.” Besides being disrespectful the comment points to a problem. Jealous for attention.
Or have you ever thought of your spouse, “They are so lazy.”
“They can get stuff done for other people but they never get anything done for me.”
“They can turn on the charm for others, but heaven forbid if they ever act like I’m around and give me any attention.”