Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A Cool Head or a Hot Head?

Are you Mrs. Hot Head?

"A cool head and a warm heart is an 
admirable composition."
--Matthew Henry, Bible commentator

How would those closest to you describe you: As a cool-head or a hot-head? Are you calm in the face of unexpected events, or do you blow up all over people and just expect them to take it? Do your responses lean more towards over-reactions? Is it a scary thing to live with you? We need to be reminded now and then that God is watching, listening, and even knows why we're behaving as we do. Where did these hot-headed reactions come from?

They're UDCs: Unresolved Daily Conflicts. As we allow the seeds of UDCs to pile up on the soil of our hearts, all it takes is for someone to come along and hurt us again, watering these old seeds and causing them to spring forth into a bitter, reactionary crop. Nobody is angry over nothing; there's a root cause underground somewhere, and it needs to be unearthed, examined and dealt with appropriately. This takes time and patience, but it's worth the effort. What's eating you that is causing you to chew on others? Get to the bottom of it.

 The world would have us believe that we have "anger management issues," but when you take the word "anger" and pair it with the word "management," you have the old Sesame Street song coming to life: "One of these things just doesn't belong here." A more accurate phrase would be "anger expression issues." We have not learned how to appropriately express or rule over our anger. And so we end up hot, bothered and ready to blow! "He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth over his spirit than he that taketh a city." (Prov. 16:32)

We wouldn't have so many UDCs if we'd just handle matters wisely and not let old hurts pile up.  Granted, some conflicts may never be fully resolved on this side of heaven, but we can still choose to forgive and move on. "He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good: and whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he." (Prov. 16:20) What does this mean? It means that we'll seek the Lord in prayer for wisdom in handling difficult people problems, rather than allowing them to sit and cause us to stew.

Do you have pain clenched in the fist of your heart? Don't embrace old hurts like they're dear friends! Let them go.

And if you've exploded in anger recently, go and make things right. People are fragile. Don't you just hate it when someone is insensitive towards you? All right then. Other people feel the same way, so go and apologize. Then ask the Lord in prayer to help you learn how to properly express your frustrations so that others won't get hurt just because you're hurting. Treat people like it's the last interaction you'll have with them on this side of heaven.

"He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exhalteth folly." (Prov. 14:29)

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