There's a lot of misunderstanding about how a Christian should deal with anger issues. The most quoted verse dealing with anger is in the epistle to the Ephesians where the Apostle Paul says, "Be angry, and yet do not sin, do not let the sun go down on your anger." Eph. 4:26. Here Paul explains that a person can be angry because anger is a natural emotion or reaction when one is:
- Surprised with unpleasant news
- Afraid, offended, embarrassed or disappointed.
His warning is to not let the anger become a trigger for sinful behavior like:
- Violence, revenge, unkindness, etc.
He says not to let the sun go down on one's anger. Many think that this means that we should resolve the problem that caused our anger in one day or the same day. But this saying (Don't let the sun go down on your anger) means don't give your anger more than its time. Anger is a normal reaction; don't let it go for too long. When it does it can easily lead one to feelings and actions that are sinful, IE. In Genesis we read that Cain was angry and resentful but did not deal with his emotions right away. Satan turned this emotion into jealous rage which led to murder. Anger is not wrong, it's an emotional power surge that needs to be dealt with as soon as possible- Here are a couple of ways to do so.
Deal with your anger. Many times we go around feeling angry but don't realize that we are. In the same Ephesian passage – vs. 25 Paul says we need to speak the truth in love. Sometimes that involves being honest with ourselves about how we really feel.
Clarify it. Try to define why you are angry, with whom you are angry, and if the anger is truly justified. Maybe the anger is not worth it or it may be over something not true. It helps dealing with the emotion if we give it some objective analysis. This may not eliminate the feelings you have but may clarify the reasons why you have them.
Give it to God. Anger is usually caused by some form of unkindness or injustice. However, getting justice or revenge doesn't necessarily heal the bruised egos or broken hearts. The healing we need from the burning heat of anger only comes when we consciously give over our burden of anger to God in prayer and submission.