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Anger Is a Choice
By Rick Warren

“Fools vent their anger, but the wise quietly hold it back.” Proverbs 29:11 (NLT)

If you want to tame your temper, you must resolve to manage it.

You have to quit saying, “I can’t control it!” and realize that you can. Just like love, anger is a choice. When you get angry, you choose to get angry. Nobody is forcing you to get angry.

People often say things like, “You make me so mad!” But the truth is that nobody can make you mad without your permission. Anger is a choice, and you must choose to control it if you want to be a loving person.

You have far more control over your anger than you may want to admit. Let me give you an example.

Let’s say you’re at home and you’re in an argument with somebody in your family. Your voices are raised, and you’re getting agitated. You’re upset. All of a sudden, the phone rings, and you answer sweetly, “Hello? Oh, yes! It’s for you, honey!”

What happened? You didn’t want to be embarrassed or have to explain, so you switched your anger off real quick. Anger is highly controllable!

The Bible says in Proverbs 29:11, “Fools vent their anger, but the wise quietly hold it back” (NLT).

Do you want to be a foolish person or a wise person? How you respond to a situation is your responsibility and yours alone. Anger is a choice.

The time to decide to manage your anger is not when your blood pressure is rising, your adrenaline is shooting into your system, you can feel the flush in your face, and your muscles start to tense.

At that point, you’ve already lost the battle.

Instead, resolve to manage your anger before you go into that meeting or walk through that front door when you get home. Decide this: “Today, I’m just not going to get angry. I’m not going to let things get to me.”

You manage your anger by first resolving—deciding in advance—that you’re going to hold it back.

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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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