angry

I hated picking out a photo for this post graphic.

It’s a hard thing to look at, isn’t it? A mother so angry that she would grab her child’s shirt and likely yell into his face. But acting in anger is a REAL issue for many moms. Maybe if you’re here reading this post, you’re one of them.

I hardly ever acted in anger until I had children. And it wasn’t really until my son was 2 years old that I started to get so frustrated and upset. Those building emotions and finally you holler or yell or slam a door or just act unbecoming of a mother and woman.

Sometimes it’s easy to think, “That’s just my personality. I’m high-strung. This is the way I handle things.” But friends, this is no way to handle parenting. No way to set the example for our children when they need to see us with a “gentle and quiet spirit” {which does not literally mean we whisper all the time, but that our hearts and moods are submitted to God.}

Our response to anger can be one of the hardest things to get under control. All sorts of messiness comes from acting out in anger and it’s difficult to reign in after we’ve “let it out.”

“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

My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,  for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. James 1:19-20

A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense. Proverbs 19:11

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control. Proverbs 29:11

That last verse is convicting isn’t it? A wise man {or woman} keeps himself {herself} under control. I don’t know about you but I want that kind wisdom! :)

It’s not enough to just tell ourselves we won’t act on our anger. And lest we think we can get rid of anger completely, remember the verse says, “In your anger, do not sin.” We WILL get angry, it is part of the human condition! It is our response to it that defines the atmosphere of our homes. What can we do?

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Practical Help

The best thing we can do is pray about our response to our children. I have been asking the Lord for the past couple of years to give me a spirit of joy, patience and grace as I mother our little ones. I’ve also asked for the Holy Spirit to convict me each time I act in anger. Let me tell you, this works! It isn’t fun, being “disciplined” by God is never fun, yet it IS profitable and it has changed me.

Three strategies for managing anger, alongside praying:

1. Know your triggers. It’s important to identify what sets us off so that we can begin to learn what our reaction SHOULD be and whether or not there are things we can do to gain control of the situation, with the help of God. For instance, clutter really gets to me. So does a messy kitchen. Is there a way I am able to make a plan for getting rid of clutter or clean up my kitchen each night so that I am less likely to have that stressor in my life?

2. Know and understand the consequences of anger. Recognize that lashing out, whether it be at your kids, spouse or other family members, is a sin. Recognize and pursue righteousness. That moment when you are humbled before God and you see how He calls you to be with your children, not angry, but patiently correcting their wrongs and directing them in the “way they should go”, it is just the time for Him to work in you! He will not leave you to do this on your own.

3. Know and act with a better reaction. If you find yourself getting angry, put yourself in timeout. No kidding. This really, really helps. Or if you find yourself wanting to yell, just start whispering {Not the hissy snake whispering either ;) }. Maybe something else will allow you to step back and get control. Pray for conviction and for wisdom and God says you will have it {James 1:5}!

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up. James 4:7,10

BONUS: Ask for accountability, perhaps from your husband or a trusted friend. You will not change overnight but over time, you will see a gradual transformation in your thoughts and actions.

What a blessing it is to know that God cares so much for you and your family–He wants to strengthen and uphold you! Families are under attack yet thankfully we have the Lord fighting for us, giving us the knowledge, self-control and mercy we need in the times we are struggling with anger.

Further Reading:

12 Bible Verses for When You Feel Like Giving Up

12 Bible Verses for When You Need Grace

She’s Gonna Blow: Real Help for Moms Dealing with Anger – This is an amazingly helpful book. It changed my perspective and was honestly the only resource that I could actually relate to when it came to struggling with anger. Please take the time to read this book on your Kindle or otherwise and then refer back to it again and again.

Check out this Newly Released eCourse! 

 

WANT TO SPEAK WITH GRACE TO YOUR KIDS INSTEAD OF YELLING?

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