“Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,” Ephesians 4:26
This has always been one of my favorite verses. I remember it often (although not always) when I get angry at someone or something.
As to the first part of the verse: We sometimes think anger as a negative emotion, something to avoid. Some have even been told or believe that anger itself is a sin.
Yet, like fear can be healthy (as I described in a previous post), so anger can be, too. It spurs us to act against injustice, bad behavior, and other sins. There are plenty of instances in scripture where God, Jesus, and many of his faithful acted in anger, and few could argue those acts were absolutely righteous and correct.
So how are we to know we don’t sin in our anger? One is to take a step back, to look upon the situation with our head as much as our heart. To ask any action helps or hurts the innocent, and does it glorify God.
That leads us to the second part.
It’s important to solve every disagreement as soon as feasible, or let go of an unsolvable issue before the sun sets, because when we don’t, that anger grows and festers.
As anyone who’s ever held a grudge (and that be all of us at one time or another), knows how it can harm and eventually ruin relationships.
We live in a time of anger, and too many of us are destroying our families and friendships over what amounts to very little in the grand and eternal scheme of things.
So if you find anger prowling around, even though it may be justified, make sure to show it the sunset before it digs its claws and teeth into your psyche.