“What is God calling us to do when we feel anger?” by The Rev. Kaji Douša
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about anger. In part, because I find myself getting angry more and more, and it feels as if we’re in a world of growing anger. Regardless of whether or not we’re more angry than we used to be, I think church needs to help people to figure out what we do most effectively with that anger. Is anger bad? Is it something that God calls on us not to feel? I would say no. I would say that there are numbers and numbers of examples throughout the Bible where even God gets mad. And so, when we get angry, I think the question becomes, what does God want us to do with it? There is a place for people of faith to feel righteous indignation. There’s certainly a place to notice something is wrong and to feel wrong about it. To feel as if it needs to change. And that anger that might spark us to say a holy no to something that is wrong is very, very important. Because it’s only when we start to notice the places where we say no, or where we need to say no, that change can come from. The problem is when our anger starts to brew within us like “a hot burning coal,” I read one writer write, that becomes uncontrollable and it burns and it harms us. And so we ask. We have to think of ways to channel that anger most effectively. And how do we know if we’re using our anger right? When good things come from it. When it turns from anger into action that is loving and compassionate. That’s the thing that God is always calling us to do. We have to love. And when we find ourselves acting out of anger that is not loving, that is when we’re not following Jesus. So, get angry. Feel the burn of change coming within you. And then effectively channel it somewhere. But when your anger harms someone, or when your anger turns into trolling on the Internet. We spoke out last week in support of Muslims, and I was shocked at how angry that made people feel. That reminded me by the way that I probably need to talk more about it. So do many of us. But figure out what to do with your anger. Respect that anger and turn it into love. That is how we follow Jesus. Amen.