I know what it’s like to keep a secret about something I felt too ashamed to admit. I also know the freedom of confiding in a trusted friend. I struggled with my anger being out of control for a long time. I felt like I had chains shackled around my body which could never be broken. The watershed moment occurred when my child exposed my anger, pushing me to confess my problem. However, my experience with anger began far before I had children of my own.
I grew up with rage and anger as a controlling force around me. My unstable home life bred deep insecurities. In high school I turned to alcohol and even some drugs to boost my confidence to fit in with the “in crowd.”
When it came to the things of God, I grew up involved in church so I felt like I lived what I considered a double life. And the longer my life of disobedience continued the more bitter and angrier I became. I knew the importance of God so I attended church and prayed to God but I didn’t know Him. I never read my Bible and did not understand what Jesus accomplished for me so I had no strength to be different when I entered adulthood.
As a wife I became a control freak! I constantly nagged my husband and disrespected him. My husband felt like he was walking on eggshells all the time. I don’t like watching TV and he felt like he couldn’t watch TV without me becoming angry. And because I couldn’t control him, I began to rage.
I struggled also with the shame of anger as a mother. As a very strong-willed child, my son would set me off when he acted out. My anger would boil and soon I’d find myself yelling horribly and spanking him. Like my past wounds from anger, I continued the cycle of inflicting hurt.
A dramatic shift in my emotional and spiritual life happened when I came to know Christ personally and began to grow in my relationship with Him. As I prayed and read my Bible daily, I witnessed God really helping me gain control over my anger at that point of my life. However, He wanted to completely break the chains of anger and guilt holding me in bondage for so long.
An alarming phone call from a state agency brought me to the place of confessing my anger to my dear Christian friend. The representative explained they were conducting an investigation of me for a claim made by my son’s teacher at school. My son had gotten in trouble and commented to his teacher he was afraid of me. I couldn’t understand why this happened now since I faithfully read my Bible and prayed. I realized my son was deeply wounded and still very afraid of me.
God revealed to me I wasn’t putting my trust in Him. I would ask God to help me not get angry but, at the same time I worried about getting angry. When my children came home from school that afternoon God used the situation to bring healing in all of us as a family. We all cried together and I apologized for the hurt I caused.
Even though I still am tempted toward destructive anger at times I depend on God’s Spirit to give me strength to control my anger which helps my son learn how to control his emotions. Plus, I have now earned more respect in his eyes. My children see God’s supernatural healing power right in front of their eyes because they have a new mom. And, God gives me the peace knowing He brings good out of everything!
“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. “(Galatians 2:20)