The hard truth about being nice
We all have bad days. Yes even pastors like me have bad days. Usually, these bad days involve two common denominators. The first being people. the second being our regretful actions toward those people when they make us angry.
So let’s all admit it is hard to be nice when you are angry at somebody. But in this adult world that is exactly what we have to do. It is also much better for our Christian witnesses to learn how to be nice when we are angry.
If you are like me you will probably admit the times you have blown up in anger have done nothing but make your situation worse.
The wonderful thing about learning how to be nice when you are angry is that you will see more progress in people. We have all heard the saying “you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar“.
You may be saying this sounds great but you don’t know what such and such did. You are right but would you rather things stay the same or gain a friend who will listen to your influence.
I bet you want to gain a influenceable friend it just not easy to put that anger aside. So read on to discover how to be nice when you are angry.
When you are angry put on your cross vision
I absolutely have horrible vision. I thought the big E was a B or an L on my vision test as a kid. It was so bad that when my family took a vacation to the beautiful mountains I read the entire time.
How could I ignore the wonder that was there? I couldn’t see it. The same principle applies to the people we are angry at. We can’t see the benefit of being kind to them through our own injured pride.
But if we look at them through the eyes of Jesus on the cross it changes everything. It transforms our worst enemy into a best friend. Because in our moment of wrath it is often rooted in our false belief we are better than them.
We tell ourselves we would never betray someone like they did us. The only solution is to break the glass panes of our pride with the truth of the cross. We were rebels, sinners, and enemies of God before Jesus paid our price on the cross.
Jesus had to die for us just like He had to die for their salvation. So we cannot claim higher ground. This should make us realize that we are both in the same boat and are both fallen people who need forgiveness.
Not to mention there is no other greater act of being nice than dying on a cross for someone when they deserve Hell. So when we put the cross between us and the object of our anger then our wrath transforms into kindness.
When you are angry fight the right person
When people betray and lie to us we want to beat them into changing for the better. But if your experience is anything like mine that just does not work.
so when you are angry how do you find it in your heart to be kind to someone who has wronged you? The answer can be found in 2 Corinthians 4:4. Paul points out that the enemy satan has blinded the minds of them which believe not.
How many times have you got angry at a blind person for bumping into you and making your day more inconvenient? probably never because we understand they are handicapped.
People are the same way that are handicapped by sin. Is it their decision? It definitely is. But the enemy puts before them a great offer that he cannot follow through on.
He then leaves them high and dry with the shrapnel it creates. Some of that shrapnel being stuck in our own hearts. Which causes us to lash out in anger. The apostle Paul also said that we do not struggle against flesh and blood.
So that person that you can’t stand is not the issue. The issue is that they have bought the lie of the enemy and are now dealing with the consequences. So the way that we change the situation is not to have a physical altercation, a sharp-edged social media post, or a cutting text message.
If we want them to change we have to be Jesus to them. That means we pray for them, we show them the grace that we were shown, and we look at them as being spiritually blind.
Then the difference will be amazing. As we pray for them we will begin to care about them. as realize they are not the true person behind the hurt we will begin to look for ways to help them to see the light of the gospel.
Will their attitude change? maybe not. But just like helping a blind person across the street doesn’t change their blindness we will find the strength to be nice because we know the hurt they are experiencing. Hurt that is caused by the lies of the enemy they have falsely bought into.
when you are angry stop , drop, and rewind
Anger is a funny thing. It is almost like a grenade in some respects. It is not the pulling of the pin that causes the injuries but instead the shrapnel from the grenade explosion.
The very act that incites anger often causes us pain. But if we were honest the actions that we react with often cause the most harm. So how can you be nice when you are angry?
First, before you proceed with Any words or emails wait at least one day to cool off. Words are like a grenade with a pin pulled in the respect that you can’t take them back. And those words will be like painful shrapnel in the recipients for years to come.
Next, try to spend some time doing something enjoyable. Just having time to do something you enjoy can begin to cool off your angry heart. Finally, rewind what exactly happened.
Think back on the reason why you became angry. Ask yourself is that something that God would be angry about? Check out this great article on Desiring God that speaks to this exact issue. Or is this an instance where I am in the wrong? If you discover that you are angry because of greed or pride it is a good idea to simply ask forgiveness.
And if you are angry for the right reasons take the road God did. Do not just be angry at people for doing the wrong things. But instead, provide a solution for where they have failed. Just like God sent Jesus to make our rebellion right with Him.