Monday, 25 September 2017

Confessions of an Ex-Angry Person—or at least, one who’s working on it

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The other day, I asked my husband to remind his men’s group to pray for someone and he said, “You mean Fred, too, don’t you?” “Of course,” I said. But I had totally forgotten that her husband needed prayer for an illness, as well. It was then I realized that I hadn’t really forgiven him for some past unkindness. Oh, I thought I had, but it gnawed at me that I really and truly hadn’t turned the issue over to God and hadn’t really let go of it.

That night before I went to sleep, I asked the Lord to forgive me for not forgiving Fred (as I’ll call him). Then, I had a dream. I almost never remember more than faint echoes of the dreams I have, but this one stayed with me a bit longer. It seems I was in a doctor’s office and there were bandages and I was asking if I would get well and a voice said to me, “I don’t know. You’re a very angry person, you know.” From that, I surmised that it was the anger that was keeping me “sick” in the dream.

When I woke up, the thought followed me around.

“But I’m not an angry person,” I thought. “I’m a happy person. I love my life, my family, my friends, the writing I do, everything. I’m not one to shake my fist and snarl. I’m all about peace and harmony.”

But still, the thought wouldn’t leave me: You’re angry.

I didn’t want to think about it, so I turned my attention to Facebook, Twitter and my favorite news websites.

It’s fortunate that I’m blessed with low blood pressure, because the things going on in the world were enough to cause a trip to the emergency room. Injustice, prejudice, hate, fear, violence, murder…sighing, I retweeted and shared and expressed my opinion all over the place. After all, people needed to know what’s going on, so they can be as outraged as I am—

Wait.

There it is: “outraged”

It doesn’t take a trip to the fat dictionary on the shelf to realize that that means “anger.”

Okay, I confessed, I’m angry about politics and world events. But basically, I’m a happy person. Aren’t I?

Think, came the still, small voice in my spirit, remember. What is breaking your heart? What is causing you to worry? And where are you placing the blame?

Well, I blame some people for certain problems.

Have you forgiven them?

Hm. I guess it didn’t occur to me.

There’s someone else you’re angry at, too.

I went through my mental list. Who, Lord?

Me.

What? No, no, no! I couldn’t be angry at You!

Why not?

Well, because You’re, um…God.

Don’t you know that sometimes when you’re frustrated at Me, you search around to find somebody else to blame?

Do I?

Yes, you do.

Well, now that I know, what can I do about it? I don’t want to be angry all the time, at You or anybody else.

There are many aspects to this anger habit of yours, but what it boils down to basically, is trust. You’re not trusting Me.

Really? I thought I was. I mean, I pray about stuff and people all the time.

Yes, you do, but after you pray, do you then trust Me to work it out?

Well, I do worry some.

Some?

Okay, a lot.

And your worry leads to fear and fear leads to frustration and frustration leads to anger and on and on…

Just thinking about that makes my stomach hurt.

Don’t you realize that all through Scripture, I’m giving you advice about how to do this the right way?

I guess I need to read my Bible a little more.

Good idea. And you need to work on trusting Me. I do love you, you know. And I love those you love, too.

I know. You proved that, all right.

Trust is made up of faith, and faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

I read that this morning. It’s Hebrews 11:1. (Sigh.) It sure would be nice to just not worry. Relaxing.

That’s the spirit.

Lord, did you just make a pun?

My dear daughter, who do you think invented humor in the first place?

 

 

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

Columnist: Behind the Mystery

 

E. E. Kennedy is the author of IRREGARDLESS OF MURDER, DEATH DANGLES A PARTICIPLE, MURDER IN THE PAST TENSE and INCOMPLETE SENTENCE, a cozy mystery series about a high school English teacher.
She grew up in far northern New York State where these mysteries are set. As an advertising copywriter, she wrote interview articles for art magazines and produced radio/TV commercials and print ads. She is a graduate of Huntingdon College and studied counseling and guidance at the University of Alabama. She and her husband live in North Carolina, are born-again Christians, and the happy, blessed grandparents of five little answers to prayer.
Her mystery website is:
www.missprenticecozymystery.com


There you'll find fun info, characters with their own pages and free preview chapters!
Join E.E. on Facebook (as Ellen Edwards Kennedy) and Twitter @eekmystery

 

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