I’m completing my thoughts on Anger: Right or Wrong? Proverbs 19:11 says, “A man’s discretion makes him slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook a transgression” (NASB). Notice the last part of this verse: It is our glory to overlook a transgression.
Has someone provoked you to anger lately? If you choose not to express that anger but rather, by God’s grace, to overlook the transgression, it will be for you a glory—an admirable thing, a beautiful thing.
As I think back, I realize that there have been times when I could have and should have overlooked a transgression. While I might have been justified in expressing my anger, it would have been an admirable thing, in some situations, to overlook the transgression—to just let it go without getting my pound of flesh or my day in court. I think I’ve missed some “glory” because I wasn’t willing to overlook the transgression. In retrospect, I’d rather have the glory than the opportunity of venting my anger.
Remember, too, that anger dissipates with time; what is making you very angry right this minute may look quite different in two hours. Also, anger is much stronger when we are tired or when our bodies aren’t in such good condition. That’s why we must be very slow to be angry.
Now, I’m certainly not saying that we should never express our anger. Definitely not. If you harbor anger and it needs to be expressed but isn’t, it will quickly deteriorate into something worse. Paul told the Ephesians not to let the sun go down on their anger. So, while we should not rush into outbursts of anger, neither should we postpone it for long periods of time. Don’t sleep with anger inside of you. It turns into rage and bitterness overnight.
Psalm 145:8 says, “The Lord is gracious and compassionate; slow to anger and rich in love” (NIV). Pray that verse into your life, asking God to make you gracious, compassionate, slow to anger, and rich in love. Then when you feel angry, you’ll have the wisdom of God to know whether to overlook it or to express it, and when and how. Don’t let uncontrolled anger ruin your relationship with God or with the people in your life. It is possible to be victorious—to be angry and sin not.