Once there was an older man known for controlling his anger. One day, a quick-tempered young man asked the old man for advice. The old man smiled and gave him a hammer and some nails.
He told the young man to go to a tree nearby and hammer a nail into it whenever he felt angry. The young man was curious, so he did what the man said. Over the next few days, whenever he got angry, he hammered nails into the tree.
As time passed, the young man noticed something interesting. The more he tried to manage his anger, the fewer nails he drove into the tree. Eventually, he didn’t feel the need to hammer any nails anymore.
Happy with his progress, the young man returned to the old man to share what happened. The old man nodded and asked him to remove all the nails from the tree. The young man did that carefully, making the tree smooth again.
With a knowing smile, the old man said, “You see, my young friend, every nail you hammered represents the harm caused by your anger. Even though you can remove the nails, the scars remain. Remember, controlling your anger stops you from causing long-lasting damage, just like the tree that can heal when you don’t hurt it repeatedly.”
Anger is a powerful emotion that, if left unchecked, can wreak havoc on various aspects of our lives. As Christians, God calls us to live a life of love, peace, and self-control. When we don’t control our anger, it can overwhelm us like a flood and destroy everything in its path.
Anger can severely damage relationships, causing division and pain. Proverbs 15:18 states, “A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.” Uncontrolled anger can lead to hurtful words and actions that fracture even the strongest bonds of love.
Trust and Goodwill
Trust is fragile, and uncontrolled anger can shatter it. Ephesians 4:26 reminds us, “In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.” Persistent anger erodes trust and undermines goodwill, making it difficult to rebuild broken relationships.
Reputation and Credibility
An outburst of anger can tarnish one’s reputation and credibility. James 1:19-20 advises, “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.” By maintaining self-control, we uphold our integrity and demonstrate the righteousness of God.
Uncontrolled anger takes a toll on our emotional well-being. It can lead to stress, anxiety, and even physical health problems. Proverbs 14:29 reminds us, “Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.” Choosing patience over anger contributes to our emotional stability and overall well-being.
Peace of Mind
Anger robs us of the contentment and joy God wants us to have. Philippians 4:6-7 offers reassurance, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” By surrendering our anger to God through prayer, we invite His peace to reign in our hearts.
Opportunities for Reconciliation and Forgiveness
Anger blocks opportunities for reconciliation and forgiveness. Matthew 5:23-24 instructs, “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First, go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” By humbly seeking reconciliation and controlling anger, we open doors to healing and restoration.
Productive Communication and Problem-Solving
Anger hampers effective communication and problem-solving. James 1:19 advises, “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” When we control our anger and approach conflicts calmly, we create an atmosphere that builds understanding and resolution.
Personal and Professional Growth
Anger impedes personal and professional growth. Galatians 5:22-23 reminds us, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Cultivating the fruit of the Spirit, including self-control, allows us to mature spiritually and excel in various areas of our lives.
Peaceful Family and Work Environment
Anger disrupts the harmony of our family and work environments. Colossians 3:13 encourages us, “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” By practicing forgiveness and controlling anger, we contribute to an atmosphere of peace and unity.
Inner Sense of Serenity and Happiness
Letting go of anger leads to an inner sense of serenity and happiness. Proverbs 19:11 reminds us, “A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense.” Choosing patience and forgiveness allows us to experience the joy and contentment that comes from a heart free of anger.
By embracing the teachings of Scripture and seeking God’s guidance, we can overcome anger and cultivate a life of inner serenity and happiness. Let us learn from Him, lean on His strength, and choose forgiveness and love over anger in every aspect of our lives.
To learn more about how important controlling your anger is as a child of God, you can watch, listen to, or download the text from Pastor Campbell’s sermon “Anger and Lying: 2 Sins You Should Shed Like a Cheap Suit.”