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Consider this quote from Abe Lincoln

"America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves."



Of all the emotions that we have as humans, anger has to be the strangest and most complex emotion to understand. We get angry at the craziest things. Depending on how short fused we are, we can be set off by something as simple as running out of our favorite kind of jelly, to having to stand in line to long at the fast food joint. Most of the time anger comes on suddenly and without explanation, while other times it comes after a slow boil that spends days or weeks building. Anger bursts forth without forewarning and when you really stop to think about it, is one of the more irrational things we humans feel. Think about it for a moment, we understand where happiness and sadness comes from and the feelings associated make perfect sense. Fear is also one of the things that makes perfect sense, especially when you are plummeting off a cliff and wondering if you will stop before you smack into the ground below, although fear can be an irrational feeling as well. Just ask those people you see on the day time talk shows who are afraid of clowns, hair and even mustard. It takes all kinds don’t you know?

But anger…we display it and unlike any other feeling we force it at someone or something else. Often we are angry for the wrong reasons and also our anger usually isn’t justified. For instance take the last time you were angry with God. Really? Are you going to try to convince me that you haven’t ever been angry with God? I think we all have from time to time, it’s easy to blame him for things, especially when we are sad or hurting. But are we being rational? I took some time this week and reread the story of Job.

Now here is a guy who had every right to be angry with God. He was a good and righteous man, who obeyed God’s word and praised God in good and bad times. So the devil came to God and bet God that he could make Job angry and upset with God, and God said that he could try but he couldn’t kill Job. So the devil stole all of Job’s animals and made his entire family sick causing Job’s children to die. Job was sad, yet he praised God and still loved God fully. The devil tried again and this time covered Job’s body with boils which were painful and oozing. Job was sad and went to his friends. His friends insisted that God was punishing Job for his sins and this made job angry because he knew that God was good and merciful. Throughout it all Job continued to praise God for what he did have, instead of being angry for him for what was taken from Job.

I think you and I need to remember the story of Job and what it means to praise God no matter what our circumstances are. Do you still have your life? Do you still have a roof over your head? Are you still loved by someone in the world? Do you live in a place where there is peace every day and a loaf of bread is as easy as a trip to the store? We need to remember to be thankful in all times, not just the ones where we feel joy and that God has given us abundance, but even in the dark times we need to thank him for what we do have. HE tells us that He has great plans for us and promises to us wealth and happiness beyond what we can imagine. Don’t forget that, and next time you get cut off in traffic and feel the hair on the back of your neck start to creep up…take a deep breath, smile and give them a wave and remember, we’re all in this together.