You can get a handle on your anger. In fact there is anger that aids in your purpose…

…God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. 29 For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son… Romans 8:28-29

One of central reasons that you are alive is to grow to become like Jesus- Its God’s purpose for you. The fact is, God gets angry; Jesus got angry… And so the more your anger is conformed to a godly anger- the more it actually lends to your purpose of becoming like Jesus… How do I take anger and make it part of my purpose?

#1- Admit…

Admit that you have an anger problem… That it’s out of control. Until you admit something- you cannot deal with it. Dealing with your problems is ALWAYS going to aid in accomplishing your purpose.

Admit it to whom?

a. God… …if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong. 1 John 1:9

b. a person… Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. James 5:16 You say why would I want to do that? Why would I want to confess my anger?  Because you want to be healed- that’s why! Its pride that makes you sick with anger and its pride that keeps you sick with anger. 

So I admit and then;

#2- Address…

Address the cause of your anger… In other words identify it.  If your sinful nature controls your mind, there is death. But if the Holy Spirit controls your mind, there is life and peace. Romans 8:11 see the word “controls”? You might say it like this; if anger controls your thoughts- the only outcome you can expect is negative. “Why” it has control needs to be identified. Think about this: The reason you are angry at the moment may not be the reason you are angry at the moment…

 

A couple of years ago someone graffitied the sides of our cars. A couple of days later I saw a kid walking down the alley behind our house with a can of spray paint. I was instantly angry. I drove around the house to the alley as fast as I could just in time to see the boy hand the paint to my 70 something year old neighbor. Instantly I realized that the boy was his grandson whom had very kindly gotten my neighbor the can of paint he had asked for out of his pick up. I suddenly knew that I had totally misunderstood the situation. My anger was justified but entirely misdirected! Now when I thought about it, I knew why I was angry and where that anger had come from. But how many painful things are buried in your heart that cause your anger at situations that have nothing to do with what is really going on? You need to identify what you are really angry about…

How do I do that? The lamp of the LORD searches the spirit of a man; it searches out his inmost being. Proverbs 20:27

You have to get God’s help to identify the roots of your anger. Notice that it’s the lamp of the Lord that searches? Why? Because the Bible says Jesus brings the darkness into the light. That means that you don’t just discover the cause of your anger so that it can become your excuse to be a jerk. No… He brings it from darkness into the light. Jesus said I am the light of the world. Jesus is the light- your problem is brought to Him for healing and restoration.

How do I get in on that? Ask God to do it. Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts.24Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life. Psalm 139:23-24

Give God permission to go on a search and destroy mission in your life.

#3- Accept…

Accept the things that you cannot change… Nothing creates anger like trying to control things, people and circumstances. You are trying to make it all work out right; but God says, Your anger can never make things right in God’s sight. James 1:20

In other words, your control and anger is never going to make things right and it’s never going to lend to accomplishing God’s purposes in your life.

By accepting the way things are- you are not saying you agree with the way they are. Only that they are out of your control and better yet that they are in control of the God who cares. Ultimately that’s what our problem is- when we try to control we are saying that God cannot control things OR that I can control things better than God can. It’s a trust issue. So accepting how things are must be accompanied by a trust in God.

 

Many times the difference between justified anger and sinful anger is one thing; the way that we express it. If I am angry about some injustice or about someone backsliding or relapsing or some GOOD reason- a God approved reason then what keeps my anger under control is the grief that I feel about the sin that has reared its

ugly head. See, because I want good to come out of this- I don’t pop my cork… I confess my anger – admit it so I release that pressure… Address the real cause inside of me and accept that I may not be able to do anything about it… What did I just do? I got my head in straight about it. It’s not personal- its sin I’m angry with- not a person. …and then I can begin to deal with it without the pressure of a personal issue…

 

So you accept;

#4- And replace…

Replace your anger… You have discovered that your anger is sinful and doesn’t lend to your purpose very well; what should you do? Get rid of it and put something in place of it that does lend to your purpose in life…

 

In an auto repair manual there is a common abbreviation; R&R. Not rest and relaxation! Its Remove and replace. It would be ridiculous to think that if the battery is bad on your car all you have to do is remove it and it will work fine; no… you must remove and what? Replace… You and I are the same way. You cannot just remove anger and think you’ll be ok- the old and defective must be removed – but also replaced with the new.Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of malicious behavior. 32 Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.Ephesians 4:31-32 The words “get rid of” literally mean to remove them from your arsenal. The word “instead” at the beginning of vs.32 means “add in” or “add too”…. So you have get rid of anger and into that empty place add forgiveness.

 

Well you say, that’s hard. I cannot forgive. No you can’t. Remember, you have given the devil, who is far stronger than you are, a foot hold – a place to work from in your life. That evil spirit of anger and un-forgiveness is keeping you captive. He is so deceptive that the whole time you think you have to keep others captive – you are the one imprisoned. You must make a choice to replace your anger with forgiveness- God will do the rest. “When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’  25 When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order.  26 Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first.”  Luke 11:24-26 Why do I get even more angry when I stuff, repress or just try to quit being angry? Because I’m not replacing my anger with forgiveness.

 

Life in Christ is the great exchange…

This is why nothing can compare to the freedom, recovery and release that you will find in Jesus Christ. Everything in Christ is an exchange: Old life for new…

Old spirit for new spirit… Old sinful nature for a new divine-godly nature… Old purpose for new purpose…

And, anger for forgiveness.