Our Emotional Response System —Anger part seven

Our Emotional Response System —Anger                                         part seven

Understand this, my beloved brethren. Let every man be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to take offense and to get angry. For man’s anger does not promote the righteousness God wishes and desires. James 1:19,20 Amplified.

Anger is a universal problem. It is not limited to one age group, culture, race, economic  level, social  status, educational  background, or any other  classification.

What is Anger?

Anger is a reaction of tension and hostility aroused by the frustration of a desire or of other goal directed behavior. Ordinarily situations that arouse anger may generally pass over quickly; but if they do not, anger becomes a set behavioral pattern and attitude.

If this persists for a long period of time, then anger affects the whole of the person’s life; emotionally, psychologically, physically and relationally. Unresolved anger will create secondary negative emotions. Guilt, fear and depression become the major secondary negative emotions.

Feeling fear and sadness is quite uncomfortable for most people; it makes you feel vulnerable and oftentimes not in control.  Because of this, people tend to avoid these feelings in any way they can.  One way to do this is by subconsciously shifting into anger mode.

In contrast to fear and sadness, anger can provide a surge of energy and make you feel more in charge, rather than feeling vulnerable or helpless.  Essentially, anger can be a means of creating a sense of control and power in the face of vulnerability and uncertainty.

Let’s look at a few examples.  When anger arises between couples sometimes there’s a fear of abandonment underneath.  In these instances, it’s a combination of fear and anticipatory loss that can fuel the anger.

Uncertainty – when you lack ample information and things feel indefinite   – can also trigger anger.  Why?  Because uncertainty touches upon the “unknown,” which tends to be scary for most people.  Even boredom can generate anger or irritation because there can be a subtle sense of loss or fear associated with the experience of not engaging in something stimulating or productive.

While having some “sense of control” is correlated with greater emotional wellbeing, excessive desire for control only leads to suffering, as it’s impossible to always be in control, especially of other people’s behavior.

Identify the  Root Cause of Anger

Anger is a serious problem. What causes it? The root cause of the emotion of anger is tension from past hurts and guilt. This mixture of pain and guilt is cumulative, and it erupts in anger when  new offenses  remind us of past  experiences.

Most people assume that hurtful events in the past will  be forgotten  and will  have no effect on the future. That is not true. Past hurts do not just go away, nor does guilt simply disappear after a wrong response to a situation. Unless these experiences are resolved through taking accountability, confessing one’s sin, repenting and receiving forgiveness , we will continue to experience  bouts of anger  when  our tension  points are triggered.


Depression is often anger turned inward, and anger is often depression turned outward. … Yet inside many depressed people is a very real anger that they don’t feel empowered enough to express. And inside many angry people is a sadness and depression that they’re afraid to experience.

Would you rather be around someone who’s depressed, or someone who’s angry?

Anyone who’s ever had to live or work with someone who’s anger v. depression chronically depressed or angry knows that it’s no fun. If you suffer from either malady yourself, you’re probably not too thrilled with it either.

We tend to think of depression and anger as two completely different conditions. Yet they’re often flip sides of the same coin.

Depression is often anger turned inward, and anger is often depression turned outward.  (I’m talking about the everyday kind, not the severe clinical kind.)

Depression often presents itself as sad, weary, lethargic behavior. Depressed people often feel like they’re just going through the motions of life without any energy or joy. Anger, on the other hand, seems full of seething, venomous, explosive energy that erupts at the slightest annoying act.

Proverbs 29:11– Fools give full vent to their anger, but the wise bring calm in the end.

Yet inside many depressed people is a very real anger that they don’t feel empowered enough to express. And inside many angry people is a sadness and depression that they’re afraid to experience.

I can tell you I’ve experienced both these phenomena myself. I’ve been fearful of expressing anger, yet the energy it took to stifle it sucked the life out of me. I’ve also been so afraid to sit with my own sadness that I lashed out at others.

And therein lies the problem. We’re too afraid to experience our real emotions, so we consciously or unconsciously stuff them, and the act of doing so brings out the equally, or frequently worse, flip side emotion. Anger turns into sadness and sadness turns into anger.

Expectations—and loss of expectation

When  people make promises and fail to keep them,  we tend to hold  that against them and become  resentful of their failure to fulfill  our expectations. When we expect certain behavior or benefits from others-especially those  who are closest to us-and they do not act as we expect, this resentment can also occur.

Proverbs 13:12 says: “Hope deferred makes a heart sick” A literal meaning of the phrase “Hope deferred” is the loss of expectations,” or a lack of fulfillment of expectations, which is similar to a death experience.” When this occurs , then our hearts are sick with grief, caused by this “death experience.” And if this grief, is not recognized or acknowledged or even denied, then depression will result.

The grief is the primary emotion, while the depression is the secondary emotion. We all have expectations. Expectations are what we call “Hope.”

We all have expectations at different stages and roles as we walk through various stages of our lives. We have expectations of our professions, work, friends, pastors and church life. “Expectations” are what we call “hope.” When these expectations are not fulfilled, then a “death of expectation” occurs. If we do not acknowledge that a death has taken place, then we embrace worldly grief.

This sets in motion a syndrome in which grief (sorrow) is characterized by guilt, anger, denial and depression. This grief, which is the primary emotional response to loss or death, is one of major causes of sickness and disease. If this grief remains unresolved, then it will lead to death, for “worldly grief leads to death” (2 Corinthians 7:10)

God heals damaged emotions—–Psalm 34:17–18; Psalm 146:7–9; Psalm 147:3

For you to flourish, you must be emotionally healthy. People get stuck in survival mode & never get free.

Emotional healing is painful. But better to endure a short period of intense honesty, pain, and healing (like a surgery) than a lifetime of emotional or physical sickness (an endless, gnawing pain).

Emotions can be harder to heal than the body. The body doesn’t talk back. Emotional problems do not mean someone is unspiritual.   He or she is wounded and needs healing.

Know who you are in Christ: a child of God who is loved (John 1:12; 1 John 3:1).

Forgive others (Matthew 6:12, 14–15). Unforgiveness is emotional cancer—like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

Let go of vengeance and put everything in God’s hands (Romans 12:17–21). When you forgive someone, you set a prisoner free.

Then you discover that the prisoner was yourself. Three big points in forgiveness: God, Others, Self.

Repent of sin (Acts 8:22–23).

If a person is demonized and the demon is cast out, it will return if the inner problem (that originally allows the demon to enter) is not dealt with (Luke 11:24–26).

Get rid of the garbage and the flies are easy to get rid of.

Renounce lies and affirm the truth (Matthew 22:29).

Be particularly aware of distorted concepts of God and of ourselves.

Intergenerational problems. Determine that things stop here. Change your family legacy. Expect and follow the Holy Spirit’s leading (John 16:13).

This is not counseling. It is God bringing healing at a person’s deepest level. How do we know if we’re healed?

Initially when we recall a previously painful memory and it has no effect on us. The stinger is removed by our Lord, the pain is gone, only God can do this at the deepest level.

Healing is fully realized when we turn our pain into a ministry to others (2 Cor. 1:3–4).

Studies have shown that humans are almost always feeling at least one emotion. Everything in your life is deeply emotional, even if you aren’t aware of it. Therefore, putting some time and effort into understanding your emotions can be a worthy investment.

It can bring you closer to learning how to fill your life with positive emotions. And this is most definitely a path worth pursuing.













8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Chris
    Jul 02, 2019 @ 02:16:18

    Hi Manny. Long time no comment. I’m testing this to see if it actually takes. If it does, I will make a longer comment.


  2. Chris
    Jul 02, 2019 @ 02:21:50

    Wow, my comment worked. For a long time, I never knew if my comments would disappear into “no man’s” land or not.
    This is a great subject in our day. There are so many people with anger issues these days. Several years ago I taught an anger management class to someone who was court ordered to take it. A few years later, he killed his girlfriend. The anger management class was Bible based and, in his case sadly, it didn’t take.
    This is an excellent topic in our day.
    I hope you and your wife are well. I’ve been light on blogging that past few years but I think I’ll eventually get back into the groove.
    God’s blessings…


    • Mannyr
      Jul 29, 2019 @ 14:11:10

      Always good to hear from you Chris. Sad turn of events for that fella. Well we just keep on plugging along in the Lord Jesus. Hope all is well with family. My wife and i are hosting our oldest grandson Caleb for a week he is a twin. His mom and dad are foster parents they have 8 children in their home presently —subject to change at any time. I tease our daughter i call her the old lady who lives in a shoe with all those kids. Take care if i don’t see ya here i’ll see you top side.


      • Chris
        Jul 30, 2019 @ 00:15:30

        Amen, Manny. All is well with the family and thanks for asking. It sounds like your life is very busy. Your daughter is a very brave woman. I grew


      • Chris
        Jul 30, 2019 @ 00:19:27

        Guess I hit the wrong button too soon. 🙂 As I was trying to “say” I grew up in a house with 6 children. I can imagine what 8 is like. They are fortunate to have grandparents like you guys. Your “topside” comment is funny. That will be one fine day.


  3. Jeff Morgan
    Jul 02, 2019 @ 20:53:22

    Hello Manny, just a quick note to thank you for everything! Both you and Victoria!! I’m putting together the next disc for the previous three messages dated 6/30/19, 6/23/19, and 6/16/19. I need the titles for the messages dated 6/23/19 and 6/16/19. I know the last one Sunday 6/30/19 was on anger. I couldn’t find on the blog the messages for the 16th and 23rd. Thanks, you can just text me the titles if you wish, that will be fine.


  4. Mannyr
    Jul 29, 2019 @ 14:02:46

    Thanks Jeff, here is the title for 6/16 “The Holy Spirit and Fruit.” 6/23 “Our Emotional Response System” AYE, Captain.


  5. Anonymous
    Sep 20, 2019 @ 16:47:32

    We are rich with these resources; thank you, Pastor Manny!


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