In my previous post I discussed the fact that many persons feel the sickness and suffering that they experience is punishment from God. Over time such persons may become angry at God for treating them so unfairly. Do you ever find yourself struggling with anger toward God? How do you deal with those moments when you feel like the Old Testament prophet Jonah who said to God, “I am so angry I could die?” In this article I am offering some suggestions that I think can help to resolve angry feelings toward God.
1. Don’t suppress your anger or pretend it doesn’t exist
Suppressed anger has negative impact on your mental health and your ability to stay focused on the things that matter. This is so even in our everyday interactions with others and is certainly the case in your relationship with God. Be honest enough to admit it if you are, and anyway if God knows your thoughts as many believe he certainly already knows how you feel about him so why bother to try to hide it?
2. Express your feelings to God
I don’t think God will be offended when we are honest and open with him. If that means letting him know how angry and disappointed we are then so be it. In my opinion it is by far the better option than to try to pretend that we are not angry when we are. However, please note that it is better to express how you feel rather than yell and scream at God, not because he can’t handle it but because you might not survive it. Studies show that you have a greater chance of suffering a heart attack in the two hours after an angry outburst.
3. Accept that life is Unfair at the best of Times
All of us would like to think that if we believe truly, live faithfully, trust completely and give generously that things will go well for us, and in general I still think that is true. However, it is also true that life does indeed take horrible detours and unexpected pathways that result in suffering even for the most saintly of persons. To pretend otherwise is silly and immature. In the Old Testament book of Malachi God speaks to the people, “you have spoken harshly about me, because you have said it is futile to serve God. There is nothing to gain by fulfilling his requirements.” But then the narrative says in reality God takes special note of those who experience pain and hurt and will count them as his treasured possessions.
4. Remember you are more than your anger.
It is important not to let your anger consume you. Remind yourself that there is more to you and that there are other aspects of you that can touch others in a positive way. Anger is a choice and one gift you have been given as a human being is to make choices. Chronic anger like hatred and resentment over time solidifies into rage and rage is the twin sister to bitterness, together they will eat away all that is good in you. Reach out to other parts of you
5. Be courageous enough to believe instead of being angry at you that God loves you
I know that may be difficult for you to believe given the fact that you are in pain but if we can continue to believe that we are loved in spite of the fact that we suffer, love can heal. It takes courage to continue to believe that, it also takes humility; often pride denies us the opportunity to live in love because it teaches us that if we suffer God is angry with us.
6. Become a channel of love to fellow sufferers
That may seem to be asking a lot from someone who suffers but love is transformative, love grows as is it is exercised, therefore exercise love to others, reach out to those who may be downtrodden or oppressed and watch your love grow and your anger dissipate.