09 Sep 2009

Dealing with Anger

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For some reason, I’ve been bumping into Chrysostrom a lot lately:

“He who is not angry when there is cause, sins. Unreasonable patience is the hotbed of many vices”

— John Chrysostom

I’ve been considering the implications of this quote, especially for highly repressed cultures. Anger turned inward is often virtuous in certain circles, but I’ve seen its fruit and its not tasty at all.

In Ephesians 4, we are called to put off falsehood and speak the truth in love since we are family. Paul assumes there will be anger in the midst of sinners and does not denounce it. Rather, “in your anger, do not sin”. Usually we think of the “blow up”, but not repression as sin. If we let it brew within, we are giving the devil a foothold in our lives. Scary thought.

The implications are great. Rather than repress anger and let it open doors to all sorts of unsavory attitudes and actions whether it’d all at once or over a period of time, let’s leverage it well to bring about holiness within ourselves and in our community.

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