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Why do I Get So Angry?

by Greg Baker  
2/02/2010 / Christian Living

So many things can be written about this. But I'll give you the secret to your anger.

You don't understand.

That's it. That's the secret. Let me explain. 99 times out of a 100 if you were capable of understanding another person's viewpoint you wouldn't get angry. Most anger is a form of selfishness. This is not to say that there aren't some things you ought to legitimately get angry about. But the honest truth is, most of the time it is our lack of understanding of the other person coupled with our own selfishness that produces anger.

Notice this verse from the Bible:

Proverbs 14:29 He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly.

In my opinion this is the single most important verse in the Bible to understanding the source of our anger. He that is slow to anger is of great understanding.

Anger blinds you to anything but your own pain. But if you were capable of seeing past your anger and putting yourself in another's shoes, you'd discover that you would have much less reason to be angry, and you may even have desires to help the other person instead of lashing out at them.

Here are some examples: Someone cuts you off while driving. What is your typical response? It is usually to get angry. But if you could have been in his mind, and knew that his wife was in labor and he was rushing her to the hospital, would that change your mind? Would you be so angry then?

Someone yells at you at work. Your reaction is to get angry. But if you understood that she just found out that her daughter had gotten in trouble at school, you might be a bit less angry. Your understanding of her situation would allow you to be more objective, less inclined to get angry. That doesn't make what she did right. But at the same time, you are less angry. Since you can't control her, it's to your benefit not to be so angry--for your sake.

Let's say someone tells a lie about you. That hurts. It's wrong. And you get angry. But if you understood that the reason he told the lie was because he is insecure in his job, he feels the boss doesn't like him, that no one likes him, and he told the lie to get people to like him, you'd be less inclined to get angry. If you know how desperate he was, you'd feel sorry for him, not angry. Understanding his position gives you greater power to fix it too. Anger doesn't fix much.

Understanding of people allows for solutions. If instead of getting angry, you simply try to understand someone, you'll not only control your anger better, you'll be able to solve the issues, and help people at the same time.

Another example is of a child stealing some food from you. Is stealing wrong? Yes, of course. And most people would get angry, unless they understood how hungry the child was. If you knew the child hadn't eaten in the last five days, what would you do? Get angry? I doubt it. Most of us would simply give the child more food.
The difference? Understanding.

The best solution to controlling your anger is to focus on trying to understand someone instead of focusing on your hurt feelings. A hasty spirit ends up in folly and much anger. But if you will take the time top understand others it will greatly reduce your anger.

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