Thursday, June 7, 2012

An Angry Christian?

Last week Jennifer and I sat in on a course together at the McMaster. I enjoyed the opportunity to be with her in the classroom, even though the professor made us work in different discussion groups. I’m actually looking forward to reading the main textbook, The Angry Christian, even though it’s about 400 pages long. The course developed the idea of taking a realistic look at anger and correcting some faulty ideas about it. So often the Christian community perpetuates the idea that getting angry is a sin. Unfortunately, what that means is that we don’t have any really good ideas about what to do when we are angry since we weren’t supposed to get this way in the first place

Though anger can be and is regularly misused with horrendous consequences, anger can also be a function of love.  In the scriptures, both God and his servants get angry at things like injustice, or like Jesus who got angry at people who were indifferent about others suffering and sickness. Anger can be a sign that something important is being threatened or violated—it’s an amber light that allows us to be aware of danger ahead. I haven’t solved all the world’s problems with anger (nor even my own) but there was lots of helpful stuff for reflection and change.

This weekend I’m travelling alone to Saskatchewan to meet with a couple of churches. Originally I was to fly home on Tuesday but my Aunt in Calgary is not well and may not last the week. Since my flight already had a stopover in Calgary I’ve arranged stay until Sunday. I spent my teenage years in Calgary and our families were very close. My parents are heading out today and I will be meeting up with them on Tuesday to say our good-byes. My aunt has been a faithful supporter of our ministry over the years and will be dearly missed.  Jennifer and the boys will be making do without me for the next week and unfortunately this  is  moving into a stressful time as we get ready to move out of our home and make preparations to return to Niger.  We would all appreciate your prayers at this time.

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