I’m living with my mother, and she laughs and mocks me about my faith. How do I prevent anger from building up inside of me because of the things she says to me?
First of all, I want you to know that the Scripture says God will never allow
us to go through something that He doesn’t give us the ability to handle. So
have confidence that you can make it through this. Philippians 4:13 says, “I can
do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” You are going to make it. He
began a good work in you, and He will finish it. Jesus said, “My mother and my
brothers are those who hear the Word of God and do it.” God spoke to Abraham,
saying, “You are going to need to leave your relatives and go to the place that
I call you to.”
So just because we grew up with somebody doesn’t mean that they understand the
Word of God or have our best interest in mind. But you have to live by the Word
of God; you have to stand on it. And James 1 says, “Count it all joy when you
encounter these trials.” It talks about rejoicing when people persecute you,
when people are against you. Consider it a joy and privilege that you are, in a
way, able to suffer for the name of Jesus by being persecuted or mocked by your
mother or your relatives.
I’m currently a worker in the church. I do still have a relationship with God, but one of the issues I have had lately is treating people kindly. It’s started about a year ago and I don’t know where it came from.
So, you’re the kind of guy that goes to God and says, “God, give me patience
and give it to me now.” Join the club, man.
James 1:19, Be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger for the anger of
man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” I want you to study that verse
and I want you to pray over that verse.
There are three steps to being free from anger there. Number one, He says, “Be
quick to hear.” The thing that gets us angry is when we jump to conclusions that
we don’t necessarily have all the facts. So, let’s be quick to hear. That’s the
first thing. Let’s listen to what other people are saying. Let’s listen to what
our heart is saying and, let’s listen to what God is saying. We need to be
quick; we need to be in a hurry to listen. This is the first step to overcoming
Number two, He says, “Be slow to speak.” The second key to overcoming anger is
doing be in a hurry to talk. Be in a hurry to listen and don’t be in a hurry to
talk. Be s-l-o-w. The Bible says, “Where there are many words, transgression is
unavoidable.” So, let’s be slow to speak. Let’s not be in a hurry to say
something that we feel. Our feelings are going to change at times in our lives.
What we have to do is be careful not to say everything that we feel because we
will end up saying something that will hurt somebody and damage somebody else
and damage ourselves.
So, be quick to hear, be slow to speak. Then the Scripture says in the third
part “Be slow to anger.” You say, “Well, how can you be slow to anger?” As
you’re quick to hear and as you’re slow to speak, you’re going to become slow in
Then He tells us the secret at the end of that verse, “For the anger of man does
not achieve the righteousness of God.” What He’s saying there is that when you
have an understanding that anger will not achieve, your anger will not bring you
your rights, anger will not make things right, anger will not change people,
then when you get that understanding, when you have that revelation that anger
will not achieve, you’ll stop getting angry.
Why do people get angry? Because we believe that when we get angry, we can
manipulate people; we can make them do what we want them to do. We use it as a
form of manipulation and control and we end up hurting ourselves and hurting
other people in the process.
People will never do what you want them to do out of anger. Some people may do
it just so that you’ll stop being angry, but it will never come from their heart
and you’ll never have the true loyalty or the true love or the true obedience
from that person.
That’s James 1:19. We also have a great teaching on our website. You can go to
the Online Bookstore section of our website and look for a tape series called
“Freedom from Anger.” We’ve had a lot of great testimonies from people whose
lives have really been impacted. It will really bless you so try to get your
hands on that.
I have an issue with anger. How can I biblically turn my anger around when I am in the heat of the moment?
I think that the first thing you’ve got to do to turn around any negative
emotion is to recognize the cause, the root. You know better than anybody the
patterns in your life, so what is the root?
The second step is found in James 1:19–20: “Everyone should be quick to listen,
slow to speak and slow to become angry.” In other words, if you want to be slow
to anger, you’ve got to start by being slow to speak. Before you say anything in
the heat of the moment, pause, walk away from the situation, and then think
about what you are about to say before you return to the situation. You’ve got
to decide, “What are the seeds I’m about to sow? If I say what I feel like, am I
going to get a good harvest?” And focus on being quick to listen. If you do that
and become slow to speak, you’ll have more restraint in the heat of the moment.
I don’t ever recall feeling such anger, and I was never a screamer or a yeller until I had kids. I don’t want to have a screaming household. What can I do about this?
Well, that’s a great question. I think so many parents are dealing with what
you’re talking about, and I’m grateful for your humility in asking it and being
willing to admit it. I think so many people deal with anger, more people than we
realize. I think we all at one time or another deal with it. It’s one of the
most powerful emotions that we have.
And, you know, children are a reward. Let’s start with that. Children are a
reward. You’ve got to change your thinking; you’ve got to realize, God has
rewarded you with those children. God has gifted you with those children. And
you’re anointed; you’re capable of raising those children in a godly way,
without having to get angry. But let’s talk about that.
First of all, having children did not cause you to become angry. Having children
simply revealed the anger that was already inside of you. And that’s the most
important reality you have to accept, and acknowledge. Circumstances don’t
create a problem; they simply reveal a problem that already exists. And, so we
have to come to grips with that. You have to come to grips with that. The
circumstances—having children—did not create your anger. So you’ve got to be
careful so that you don’t resent them when you think that they’re the source of
your anger, then you’ll start to resent them even more, and it will feed into
that anger and you’ll get even more angry towards them. And so you have to
realize that they are not the source of your anger. The anger was already there.
And that is the most important, critical assessment or acknowledgement that you
have to make. The anger was already there. It just didn’t have an opportunity to
show up and to manifest itself. Okay. That’s number one.
Number two, you have to realize. Here’s how I get people out of anger, and how
I’ve gotten out of anger. You have to realize that James 1 says “Be quick to
hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger, for the anger of man does not achieve
the righteousness of God.” The anger of man does not achieve the righteousness
of God. What God is trying tell us in that verse is the reason people get angry
is because they have a conviction in their mind and heart that anger will
achieve something. That anger will accomplish something. And God wants us to
have the truth—that anger will not achieve, it will not accomplish. So we have
to accept that our anger will not achieve and it will not accomplish anything,
and therefore that will be another reason why you’ll be restrained in your
anger, and it will be another reason to withdraw your anger. Because, when you
recognize that it will not achieve anything, then you’ll stop using it to
manipulate and stop using it to try get people to do what you want them to do.
Thirdly, it says, “it does not achieve the righteousness of God.” So, one of the
reasons we get angry is because we’re trying to be righteous, we’re trying to
get things to be right in our life. We’re trying to make ourselves right, we’re
trying to make others right, we’re trying to make the circumstances around us to
become right. And that’s why we get angry. We’re using our anger to try to make
things become right. Or try to cause things to become right. And what we have to
do, is we have to go back, since we’re using anger to make things right, let’s
find out a better way to make things right. And the better way is, Paul said in
2 Corinthians 5 that “He who knew no sin was made sin for us that we would be
made the righteousness of God inHim.” And so we have to accept our righteousness
and understand that we are the righteousness of God, that we are right with God,
and God looks at us and says, “You are righteous, you are right.” He looks at us
and He claims that we’re righteous through the blood of Jesus as we put our
faith in the blood. That establishes our righteousness. You say, “What does that
have to do with anger?” Well, simply this. It has to do with anger because we
use anger to become right. We use anger to prove we’re right. We use anger to
make other people act right. And what we need to do is we need to realize that
we are right through the blood of Jesus. We’re righteous through the blood of
Jesus, and that will deliver us from anger.
So, so far I’ve given you several steps to take in dealing with anger and you
can go to our website, at changinglives.org and you can get more information on
anger. We have some great teaching. Simple steps. “Absolute Freedom From Anger”
is a great teaching that we have. You can order that material. That will also
help you deal with anger.
And another thing that I would do in your household since you are raising
children, is you have to realize that one of the reasons we get angry is because
we tolerate bad attitudes and bad behavior in our children. We tolerate it until
it bothers us. And what we have to do is we have to stop tolerating it right
away. In other words, you can train your children to listen to your voice when
you’re yelling, or you can train your children to listen to your voice when
you’re speaking with a whisper. But all you have to do is you have to discipline
them when they don’t listen to you.
With my children, I don’t have to raise my voice, and I’ve trained my children
that I don’t have to repeat myself twice. Because when I say something once, and
when they do it, they’re blessed. When they don’t do it, they are disciplined
and they are punished. Not in an ungodly way. They’re spanked. They lose
rewards. Or some way of being corrected. Then, we have a set of rules, we have a
chart with rules and we have a chart with consequences and we have a chart with
rewards as well. Good consequences and bad consequences. And when they violate
one of those rules, then we implement immediately those consequences.
And if you implement them immediately when the action or the behavior takes
place, or the attitude takes place, then it will change your child and you will
not have to get angry because their behavior will not be over and over again,
because you’re dealing with it the first time. And when they know that you’re
going to deal severely with it the first time they violate a rule or have a
wrong attitude, when they understand that, then they’re not going to cross that
line a second time. But when you say, “Stop that Johnny” and then they keep
doing it. And then you say, “Stop that Johnny!” and then they keep doing it. And
then you’re like, “STOP THAT JOHNNY!” and they finally stop because you go so
mad. You’ve trained them to only listen to you the third time, and you just
trained them to only listen to you when you raise your voice at the highest
level. Instead, say it one time, make sure they hear you, say it one time, and
if they don’t respond, then you have to discipline them immediately.
And that will not only change your family and change your children, but it will
change you—you’ll be so happy, you’ll find that joy. That joy will come back to
you. And to all the parents that are listening to this broadcast, you’ll find
your joy again, and you’ll love your children. I love my children. I love my
children because they respond to me now. Right away, whereas they used to not. I
had to discipline them, and train them, and it took weeks, months and years for
them to do it. And even today, if as teenagers they don’t listen to me right
away, they get consequences right away. I’m not saying anything twice. Why
should I? Why should I get angry? Why should I get stressed out? Why should I
have a heart attack in raising my children? I’m absolutely not going to do that.
I’m going to say it once, and then if they don’t do it, they’re going to be
That’s how you got to be. That will stop the anger in your family, that will
restore the joy back to your life. And that will cause you have godly children
that will be raised to listen to the voice of God right away. They’ll listen to
God’s voice. And you train them to hear your whisper. They’ll learn to hear that
still small voice of God. Now I come home, we have dinner, we sit around the
table and I say to my children, “What has God spoken to you today?” And they
tell me. “Well, I just heard God tell me this.” Or “Today I heard in my heart
God tell me this.” Or “I heard God tell me this.” And they’re hearing God’s
voice. And you know why? Because I’ve trained them to listen to my voice. I
don’t want God to have to tell them something twenty times before they listen. I
want them to hear God’s voice and immediately respond. And how do I train them
in that? By having them hear my voice, and immediately respond. I hope that
you’ll follow that policy and your life will be changed.