“In your anger do not sin” : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold” ( Ephesians 4:26-7).
Anger can be a terrible thing, especially when it is all bottled up, only like a fuse one day to explode. Perhaps it is for this reason why scripture emphasizes forgiveness and letting go. “Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord”( Romans 12:19). For holding on to anger can lead to terrible consequences.
All this can be revealed in one dark episode. The story goes once a son of King David, Amnon, had an infatuation with his half sister. In his craze, spurned on by his nook mates, he feigned sickness and tricked Tamar to visit him to take care of him in a closed space. “But as she was feeding him, he grabbed her and demanded, “Come to bed with me, my darling sister” ( 2 Samuel 3: 11). She hesitated; then he raped her!
Of course when “King David heard what had happened, he was very angry” ( vv 21). But it was not the end of life, for him . Tamar’s full brother, Absalom, took the issue differently though on learning so. “Her brother Absalom saw her and asked, “Is it true that Amnon has been with you? Well, my sister, keep quiet for now, since he’s your brother. Don’t you worry about it” ( vv 20). The young man steamed and stored his anger. He plotted vengeance. “And though Absalom never spoke to Amnon about this, he hated Amnon deeply because of what he had done to his sister” (vv 22).
At an opportune time, two years later, he got Amnon drunk and had him murdered” ( vv 23-28). The king was heartbroken on learning of the death of his son. Perhaps, realizing he had overstretched, Absalom fled. But King David reconciled and persuaded him to return home. However, the relationship was never the same. Ultimately Absalom would take on the father and temporarily overthrow him, only to perish in a battle of his troops against King David. Cornered, David’s General, Joab, “took three spears in his hand and thrust them through Absalom’s heart, while he was still alive in the midst of the terebinth tree” ( 2 Samuel 18: 14).
Absalom’s problems had all started because he had an anger issue. Rather than surrendering matters to God, he decided to take them into his hands. And for that down the road he went! Perhaps, there is a matter pressing you too and you feel rightly done wrong. How about like King David surrendering it all to God for his justice, then holding on to it, tightly, only like a fuse to blow up one day, act foolishly, much to your pitiful regret.
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, for any matter where I feel I have been done wrong, I surrender all to you, and embrace the forgiveness and grace that comes through you, for peace, all this I pray in Jesus’s name.