A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare. — Proverbs 15:1
In the spring of 1894, the Baltimore Orioles came to Boston to play a routine baseball game. At one point during the game, the Orioles’ John McGraw got into a fight with the Boston third baseman. In just a few minutes, both teams had emptied their dugouts and joined the brawl.
The fight quickly spread to the grandstands. In a rage, someone set fire to the stands and the entire ballpark burned to the ground. Not only that, but the fire spread to 107 other surrounding buildings as well.
The spread of that fire tells us quite a bit about the spread of anger. From one or two people, a storm of anger can be ignited that spreads like wildfire to others. But in most cases, this firestorm of anger could’ve been stopped if the first person would’ve simply dealt with his anger in a healthy way.
Tempers often flare within families, in places of work, and among friends. But with the power of Christ in you, you can deal with your anger constructively and keep the situation calm. So when you feel tempted to burst out in anger, take a breath and ask God how He wants you to react. You’ll find dealing with anger well will build healthier and happier relationships with others!
Pray and ask God to give you discernment on how to react when you feel angry.
Questions for thought
Why do you think the emotion of anger spreads so quickly when it’s expressed inappropriately?
Can you think of a time when anger caused you to overreact? How could you have better dealt with your anger in that situation?