Sometimes when I'm angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn't give me the right to be cruel.
When I was growing up I was never allowed me to be angry. My mother said it was an emotion that I had to suppress inside. She insisted that anger was a negative emotion and I must never let others see my anger. She even went so far as to say I didn't have the right to be angry.
I would like to think her intentions were good, but sadly I feel she missed the mark a little bit. Suppressing anger never works. Oh maybe for a while, but eventually it takes its toll and it ain't pretty. It took me a long time to realize that sometimes I do have the right to be angry and that anger in and of itself is not a bad thing.
Sometimes anger can be the driving force behind a necessary change. Take for example the "sea of stuff" taking over the ol' farmstead. I had to get to the point where having so much chaos surrounding me made me angry --- angry enough to begin to make the changes necessary to bring order to our little corner of the world.
Sometimes anger is justified. Someone wrongs me and I have every right to be angry. My chicklets are most often the guilty culprits of this in my life. There are days where I swear they exist merely to break each and every rule that has been set. They speak disrespectfully to me or each other and it angers me.
Sadly, there are times (more often than I care to admit actually) I let anger get the best of me. I hear myself yelling and saying things that are nothing short of cruel and I cringe. I do this most with Boy Wonder. He has always been a "button pusher" and seems to have gone into overdrive since reaching puberty. Instead of being the "grown-up" in the situation, I let my anger take over and I say things I am not proud of.
There have been several times in my life that God decides that I need to hear something. He will put the message in front of me until I finally get it. I will see a topic in magazine articles or blog posts, I'll hear conversations or someone will mention something and I'll think, "Hmmm, I've been hearing about that a lot lately --- I wonder if God is trying to tell me something." That's exactly what's happened regarding anger for me. From blog posts to conversations with other mothers, I am sure God is trying to get me to pay attention and listen.
Anger is not wrong. It is not something to be ashamed of. It is not something to deny and stuff down. There are times when anger is justified. Anger is not necessarily bad, but it is what you do with that anger that matters. I know that as a Mama Hen, I need to make a conscious effort to use it to motivate change within myself and/or my littles.
Change is never easy, but I know God will give me the tools I need to do so. I am sure that there will be many more blog posts to provide me with direction. I know for sure the circle of women I meet with weekly will continue to help me grow through accountability and shared stories.
It is wise to direct your anger towards problems — not people; to focus your energies on answers — not excuses.
William Arthur Ward