Not all anger is bad: “He who is not angry, whereas he has cause to be, sins. For unreasonable patience is the hotbed of many vices; it fosters negligence, and incites not only the wicked but the good to do wrong” (St. John Chrysostom).
How do we tell the difference?
God always confronts and helps us work through our anger, if we let Him. He helps us tame the monster within by asking us specifically about it.
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LOVE the Word® is a Bible study method based on Mary's own practice: lectio without the Latin. Get the book based on her method in the right margin, How to Pray Like Mary.
L – Listen (Receive the Word.)
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O – Observe (Choose one or more of the following personality approaches to connect the passage to your life and recent events.)
Take a look at this list of questions God asks His angry people in the Scriptures throughout this series. Does any one of them stand out for you? Choose the one that resonates most.
Cain, Genesis 4:6, “Why are you angry?”
Esau, Genesis 27:36, “Is he not rightly named Jacob (cheater)?”
Moses, Exodus 2:14, “Who made you a prince and judge?”
Balaam, Numbers 22, “What have I done to you?”
Haman, Esther 7:2, “What is your request?”
Elijah, 1 Kings 19:9, “What are you doing here?”
Saul, 1 Samuel 15:19, “Why did you not obey?”
David, 2 Samuel 12:9, “Why have you despised the commandment of the Lord?”
Jonah 4:4, “Is it right for you to be angry?”
Prodigal’s Brother, Luke 15: 28, “Won’t you come to the party?”
Judas, Luke 22:48, “Are you betraying me?”
Paul, Acts 9, “Why are you persecuting me?”
F | Franciscan – Make a list of all the good, virtuous, and admirable qualities in the person you are most angry at. List at least ten. And if you can get 25, I'll offer a Mass for you both. Drop me a comment or message me on Facebook.
I | Ignatian – Imagine you are sitting knee to knee, facing Jesus. You are in a room alone together as He says these words (questions, above) to you. What are your thoughts and feelings? What will you do?
A | Augustinian – Which episode of this series resonated with you most? What does the Lord want you to do now?
T | Thomistic – See if you can commit the list of people and questions, above, to memory.
V – Verbalize (Pray about your thoughts and emotions.)
Remembering that He loves you and that you are in His presence, talk to God about the particulars of your O – Observe step. You may want to write your reflections in your LOVE the Word® journal. Or, get a free journal page and guide in the right-hand margin.
E – Entrust (May it be done to me according to your word!)
O Lord Jesus Christ, Who said to Your Apostles: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you,” regard not my sins but the faith of Your Church, and deign to give her peace and unity according to Your Will: Who live and reign, God, world without end. Amen.+
*Find out your prayer temperament with this quiz! LOVE the Word® exercises are offered according to FIAT: the four personalities, or “prayer forms,” explored in Prayer and Temperament, by Chester Michael and Marie Norrisey: Franciscan, Ignatian, Augustinian, and Thomistic: FIAT! These prayer forms correspond to the Myers-Briggs personality types.
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