Yesterday I shared about a reaction to my husband that revealed some deep seated anger in my heart. In my quest to seek the Lord about what happened, I came across some helpful words in a chapter on overcoming anger in Women Counseling Women, edited by Elyse Fitzpatrick.
I changed the name of the woman in the illustration to my own:
“A gap in Sheree’s understanding was a clear understanding of God’s providence. Providence is ‘the continuing action of God by which he preserves in existence the creation which he has brought into being, and guides it to his intended purposes for it.’ For all of us, including Sheree, God’s providence means that God is not only sustaining and maintaining all of His creation, but He is also guiding and directing the course of events in Sheree’s life to fulfill His purposes. These purposes include bringing glory to Himself and molding her more and more into Christlikeness.”
That day, I wasn’t being like Christ. I retaliated. Reacted. Lashed out. Sinned back. This was a failure to bear the image of the One who responded to my sin by treating me not how I deserved, but Who said: “Father, forgive her.” When I surrendered my life to follow Christ and accepted His death as the payment for my sins, I became the recipient of forgiveness for every past, present and future sin.
Including my anger, selfishness, impatience and harshness toward my husband on that Thursday evening.
Do you struggle with anger? Like me, do you lack the perspective that a sovereign God is lovingly orchestrating circumstances in your life (including the sins against you…amazing!) for the intended purpose of making you more like Jesus? Are you failing to do so and, perhaps, battling hopelessness that you can ever change?
Then join me in repentance and faith that God really does cause all things to work together for good. My sinful response to my husband showed me a lot about what has been going on silently in my heart and life. It’s been hard. But, oh, how precious is the gift of conviction of sin! I am now able to run to the throne of grace with fresh gratitude for being declared not guilty and forgiven by a merciful and compassionate Savior. Grace is more amazing on a backdrop of sin.
I’ll finish my musings on my anger tomorrow.