anger1Not too long ago there was a psychological theory called “ventilation.” I’m not sure whether or not it has died out everywhere yet. But theory or no theory, it’s still seems to be a popular idea—if you’ve got something churning inside, you’d better get it out, for you own good.

“What’s wrong with that?”

Well, several things. I think I’ll just mention two.

First, the self-centeredness of it is apparent. Who cares what happens to the other guy when I take out my ire on him—I’m the one who counts!

“Well, I can see that. What’s the second thing?”

Let me read you what God says about the issue in Proverbs 29:11:

A stubborn fool fully ventilates his anger,
but the wise, holding it back, quiets it.

“Wow! Didn’t know God had spoken about the matter!”

Quite explicitly. Who wants to make a fool of himself? And it doesn’t hurt you to “hold it back” as the Freudians thought, either. In fact the more you work yourself up into a lather that finally spills out, the worse things get—not the better. No only for you—but for everyone around you.

And first thing you know, you have to go around seeking forgiveness. To vent your anger is foolish in every way you can imagine. For sure, ventilation isn’t an option for the believer. Something to think about, eh?



That temper of mine!
__Forgive me, Lord —
__I let it get the better of me again.
When will I ever learn to wait
__until I’ve heard the whole story,
__to respond under pressure
__as Christ would,
__to meet evil with good?
I’m growing, Lord,
__but my growth is far too slow.
Till my life —
__break up the clods of pride,
__root out weeds of selfishness,
__plow under every vestige of stubbornness.
Cultivate me and sow liberally
__more of the Spirit’s fruit-bearing seed.
Send showers
__and storms (if need be);
__shine brightly on my soul.
Then I will sprout forth
__patience and kindness and love —
__and self-control —
__in abundance,
And my tongue will learn
__to help and heal
__and praise the Name
________of the One through Whom
_______________I pray,