BY ALAN BAILEY
It’s not hard to see. For some reason, anger is alive and well, roaring like an escaped lion.
On the news we see people becoming enraged on the roads for some triviality, ready to smash people and their motor cars. I saw an all-in brawl among youngsters at a skateboard park. Then I noted the uncontrolled passion of an ex-husband who wants to murder all who have opposed him.
Anger is also stalking the sports field among players and spectators. Earlier this year, a professional tennis player smashed no less than four racquets in a temper tantrum. There they were, all pathetically wrecked, fit only for the rubbish bin.
So what is going on? Why are so many people so quickly aroused to boiling point?
The way I see it, people today have so much at their disposal for their pleasure, that they must have constant and instant access to the things they badly want. They plan each move to be to their own benefit and ultimate fulfillment. That’s what life is about: satisfying desire.
While aiming for this, people are very often over-busy, stressed, and anything but at rest within. Suddenly, a blockage to their dream pops up in front of them. It must be attacked! Losing self-control, they thrash around to change things back the way they want them.
Adults have become like children, always wanting their own way.
How many parents have said that about their children! But remember this; the Bible has said it about us. We have all gone astray like sheep; we have turned everyone to our own way.
Wanting your own way at all cost is also known as willfulness.
Not a word we use much these days but it says a lot. It is willfulness that keeps us away from a near relationship with God. It takes us in the wrong direction in life. It spoils our relationships with those around us as well. It is the essence of sin.
The same part of the Bible goes on to say, “….but the Lord has laid upon Him the sin of us all” (Isaiah 53:6). God saw our condition but answered with mercy. The punishment we deserved was taken by Jesus. Those who recognize their need of a substitute and Savior and accept Him by faith find there is a new beginning. We are changed from within.
A Christian is a person with a new set of desires. Self-centeredness no longer needs to rule. This new life should show more and more of the characteristics of the Master Himself. Sure, Christians can fail, but they are forgiven.
Is anger never right? Sometimes it is justified to defend the poor and widowed. Christ was also angry with hypocrisy. God is angry with sin, according to the Bible. But so much of the time it is a sign of our great weakness and need. Thank God for another way.