Misdirected Anger

Today’s Scripture

Food For Thought  Anger is not a sin.  Anger is an emotion, not an action or behavior.  How we choose to act upon our anger is where we can get into trouble…a lot of trouble!  We can feel angry, and sometimes even voice that we are angry or mad, and still keep ourselves from sinning.  But it’s hard and it takes a lot of work and conscious choices to stop ourselves from making sinful choices in our angry moments.

I know this because, as any human, I have made some very poor choices while angry, particularly with my words.  Often, in the heat of the moment, I feel justified in my verbal expression.  I want to get the point across…I’m mad!  There is an injustice here!  I am going to voice my frustration and annoyance until someone or something changes!  Sometimes those words come back to haunt me.  Sometimes I find myself on the fast track from vindication to humble apology.  Sometimes my angry outburst just leaves me feeling really yucky inside.

I don’t think there’s any time this is more true than when my anger gets misdirected.  I doubt I’m the only one that has been guilty of this type of reaction to anger.  This seems to happen a lot when the person, or people, we are angry with are not present for us to share our outrage.  Other times, we are afraid to share our anger with the guilty person or people.  This happens a lot in work settings and also within our church families.  We’re mad at someone, but feel if we share that we will somehow be punished and/or ridiculed.  And before you know it, we have misdirected anger.

I’m so ashamed of how many times I came home from a terrible day at work, only to lash out at the only people who truly love and care about me, my husband and daughter.  It was completely beyond their control if a parent yelled and cursed at me that day.  They had no role in the decisions that were made regarding my loss of plan time or the meeting that went extra long.  It wasn’t their fault when I had an over-crowded classroom or students having violent outbursts every day.  Day after day, I would bottle up my anger at work only to come home ready to pick a fight with my husband over the least little thing.  It was a horrible way to spend what little time we had together.  My unprovoked outbursts at my family, the lack of patience, and harsh words, all were sinful actions because of my anger.

I’m not a violent person, but I have been proficient in yelling and door-slamming.  It’s the ugly, raw side of my anger.  Now, I’m more likely to verbalize when I’m mad, but with less yelling.  To make the conversation even more productive, I need to say why I’m angry or upset.  With my daughter, this may sound like, “I’m angry that you spoke to me and your dad with that tone.  You should be more respectful of adults.”  Surprisingly, by starting the sentence with “I’m angry,” I don’t yell or sound so mad.  I’m just stating my feeling and why.  It’s been a more productive way to address behaviors that need to change.

Just the other night I told my husband, “I’m kinda mad at you right now.”  When I state it this way, without all the yelling, he will simply ask, “Why?  What happened?”  Then we can discuss the circumstances and try to fix the problem.  I haven’t mastered this area of my life yet.  I still have a lot of work to do, but I can watch fewer sunsets through angry eyes.


 

Today’s Recipe

I found an interesting new food product while shopping at Aldi Grocery earlier this week. I’ve discovered this is one of the cool things about this store…I never know what I’m gonna find! BTW, I am not affiliated with or compensated by the Aldi Corporation.

The other day I found this jar of Minced Chili with Garlic, which is basically like a red chili paste, but chunkier and with minced garlic. I knew I had to try it! I decided I would make a spicy burger with this new condiment. When I removed the lid, I was hit with a spicy, garlicky aroma that eluded to a very flavorful ingredient. When I let my husband take a whiff, he was downright giddy, as he LOVES spicy foods and always eager to try something new.

If you are lucky enough to find a product like this, I hope you’ll try my Spicy Chili Garlic Cheeseburgers. My ratio is about 1 tablespoon of the chili per pound of ground meat. It was delightfully spicy for my family, full of flavor without overpowering the other ingredients. You can adjust the heat for your preference. If you can’t find this product, you might try mixing some red chili paste with some minced garlic. If you do, be sure to let me know how that goes!

Spicy Chili Garlic Cheeseburgers (makes 8 burgers)

Ingredients

  • 1 8-count pkg hamburger buns
  • 2 lbs 85/15 ground beef
  • 1/2 of a 1-oz pkg reduced sodium taco seasoning
  • 2 TBS minced chili with garlic
  • 8 slices pepper jack cheese (We like the Monterey Jack Cheese with Jalapenos from Kraft)
  • Guacamole

Directions

Place the ground beef, taco seasoning, and minced chili in a large bowl. Mix all ingredients together and form 8 hamburger patties.

Heat large skillet or griddle to 325 degrees. Place patties on pan and cook about five minutes. Turn and finish cooking until desired doneness. Be aware that because of the red chilis, the burgers will retain some red or pink hue.

Place a slice of cheese on each burger and allow to melt.

Spread guacamole on bottom of each hamburger bun and top with cheeseburger.

My family loved these burgers, but especially my husband, who is now looking forward to taking leftovers in his lunch for the rest of the week!