Sometimes when I read the Bible I get angry. Of course, I try my darnedest not to sin my anger. But, I might get a little whiny with God.
I say, “I think you left something out here, Lord.”
Take this message from Paul, found in Ephesians 4:31
"Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice."
That verse in particular has caused me some anger, which is ironic.
It makes me think of The Gap. Ya know, they have those plastic boards they fold t-shirts with to make them look perfect when on display. That’s what I imagine Paul to be saying in this passage. “So, you just take this here pile of bitterness, wrath and anger and you take this here plastic thingy and fold it up and then you put it away on the shelf. Make sure to put it on that high one over there so no one can touch it. Don’t forget the malice!"
If only bitterness was that easy to handle, I could just take a few days to do some bitterness clearing and be done with it.
What about other things like worry and anxiety? There are multiple times in the Bible where we read, “Be anxious for nothing” or “Do not worry, just look at the pretty little birds.” He doesn’t even give us a Gap reference for that one. He just says, "Hey, don’t do that!”
It almost seems as if the Bible is incomplete. But, then I’m reminded that the Bible is more than one verse, one chapter, or even one book. There are other verses to be found! Other words to write upon my heart. He’s not just saying, “No worrying allowed.” He shows me lots of other options.
He tells me who He is, in Zephaniah 3:17, “The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you with His love; He will exalt over you with loud singing.”
He reminds me what He does, in Deuteronomy 31:8, “The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged.”
He gives me a plan B, in Jeremiah 33:3, “Call to me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.“
My anger melts away as I’m reminded that His Word is life giving, full of wisdom and encouragement.
Reprinted with permission from Missional Women. Keri Welch is a contributing blogger to Missional Women. She lives in the Greater Seattle area with her husband, their three boys, and 2 weiner pups.