Following on from bitterness, there are further roots that wreck the heart. After giving some advice regarding anger, the Apostle now is even stronger and rather than ‘putting it off’ he says ‘get rid’. Easier said than done you may rightly say. This is not getting rid of the emotions when someone has jumped the queue or short-changed you. This is ‘getting rid’ when you have been badly mistreated, abused or rejected. When your heart is truly broken.
Get rid of all rage and anger, Ephesians 4 v31
Some days all you can do is pray.
Maybe today is one of those days for you.
Let me try and help with this prayer. Pray with me:
I have often been angry at the small things in life. The things that didn’t really matter have brought words of anger. As a child I remember stomping my feet, gritting my teeth and doing all manner of things because I didn’t get my own way. I’m still that child but life has got a whole lot more serious since those days.
This life has heartache, betrayals and failures, grief and loss so deep so hurtful that it feels like an illness than an emotion. All around me are deceitfulness and lies, abuse and mistrust, stories of the wounding of people and riding roughshod over the weak so that the powerful become more powerful.
In their trails lay broken hearts and a pain never known unless you experience it.
This has the potential to destroy me. To make me no more. To remove me. I feel its power. It wants to change my vocabulary. It feeds me words that I have never used. It taunts me, laughs at me, sneers and all the time tempts me to explode with new wicked words that will only backfire to cause more destruction.
How do I get rid of the raging war in my soul? How do I get rid of the anger of the injustice done to me and to others?
Do I hope it isn’t there in the morning? Do I think you will take it from me?
Why do I have to get rid when I never asked for it in the first place?
Lord, have mercy on me.
Where is your mercy found?
And so I come to the old rugged cross once again.
I take my cross and I deny myself.
I make that commitment today to choose to bless others. Even those who don’t know what they are doing to me.
I bless them. I want them to be happy. I pray for their well-being. I think of them not as my enemies but as my friends. I don’t have to hold their hands but I hold my hands up for them. Bless them my Father. As I see your goodness and grace fall on them and as I see heaven open over their lives I commit to smiling at them. I smile through the tears. Bless them Father, Bless them Jesus, Bless them Holy Spirit.
I choose to bless until peace arrives again. Quietness will come after the pain. I bless to get to the stillness of the soul. It feels I will have to stay blessing for some time but in my loneliness you are here, my life is easier when I look on you.
So hear my prayer