23 May 13
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
I am so bad at this. Even after all this time, I still struggle with my anger. The main differences between the old me and the new me is that most of the time these days, I recognize that my anger is my frustration with myself, and not others. But I still find myself fighting against it, and sometimes losing miserably.
Even when I catch myself before I lash out, those that know me see my initial anger on my face. And I can feel their response to it. I do not blame them for reacting, it’s not like I can deny the feeling. All I can do is confess what led to my frustrations and pray for forgiveness.
Some of my triggers include the big four: hungry, angry, lonely and tired. Notice the acronym there? H.A.L.T. While I can get set up for failure by any of those four, my biggest is the lonely trigger. If I do not get my “Cristy-time”, I find myself getting bound up in my own insecurities, and that shows that my faith is in dire need of prayer, and fellowship with my beautiful wife.
I have to remind myself that I gave her over to God, and that no matter how much I try, she is His and I cannot take her back. She is His gift, but I cannot be jealous that she has her own tasks to accomplish for Him, work that He wants her to do. This is one of my biggest challenges from Him and I need to meet it knowing that He will bring us back to each other. I think I need her, but what I really need is Him, and I need to rely on Him that we are together because of Him.
The night we met, it was Love at first sight. Literally, she walked into the bar I was at (pre-Christian days) and our eyes met across the smoke-filled room. It was like an electric shock went through me. Then the blonde in the little black dress and heels walked across the suddenly silent, empty room and stood across the table from me. We talked. I have no idea about what. But we talked. We moved in together that night, pretty much, and even though we slept in the same bed, it was quite some time before I made a move on her. For me at this time in my life, that was unheard of. Again, this was before I had any concept of what being a Christian was or that I would ever be one. Don’t judge.
Looking back with my 20/20 hindsight, I can see God’s hand at work, bringing me the angel that I would need to get me to move in the right direction. To inspire me to be a better man than the nothing that I was at the time. We grew together and eventually found the path to Him as one. For a long time we each had the other on a pedestal. When all that came crashing down, it was because the Lord was the one we should have had up there, not another human being. Lesson learned, Lord.
Abba God, forgive me for the times that I have chosen anger over Love. I thank you that slowly but surely you are leading me along the path that is righteous and good. That even when I do become angry, I no longer dwell in it and allow it to control me for days. Instead you have shown me how to recognize it and see it and get over it. You have shown me how to seek forgiveness for my actions and to not seek to assign blame to others. Continue to grow me God, and guide my steps on the narrow path to you. Amen.