Why the Anger? (Part II)
I shared in last month’s newsletter about a common problem in marital relationships. I wrote about Jason and Lisa (fictitious) and their story. Jason was quick to get angry with Lisa, drinking more and more, and staying away from home late at night. Jason’s complaint was that Lisa nagged him constantly. Counseling soon reveals that Jason’s dad verbally and physically abused his mom, sister, and him. We were able to show Jason scripturally the importance of forgiving dad in order that dad’s sins could no longer hold him captive to the same sins (Jn. 20:19-23).
Jason has forgiven dad. Now, is counseling over? …Probably not. He has experienced many traumatic events from his childhood. He never talked to anybody about the abuse but only that he hated dad. Jason snaps, “What my dad did is the past. I just want to get on with my life.” The problem is that Jason will never get on with his life until he deals with his painful past and finds God’s healing. Jason does not know what to do with the hurting little boy inside of him, so he easily becomes angry in being questioned in any way by Lisa. Lisa is not his problem. The unresolved pain of his past is his problem. So, what must we do?
Jason must deal with his past by sharing to me and Lisa the painful events. Of course, every situation cannot be discussed but the ones that Jason will recall. He does not want to discuss any of the events. Why? …Because sharing the events renew the pain and anger. At least, we see the real reason for his anger where we can expose it and find healing. Jason reluctantly begins his story. “I remember that I was six, and I was holding my four year old sister close to me because she was so afraid. Dad was whipping Mom, and I couldn’t help her. I just sat and cried.” Jason sits weeping as he recalls that day.
I shared with Jason and Lisa God’s Word, James 5:16, “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed…” Faults are certainly sins that we have committed. I repent to Jesus for my sins, and He forgives (I Jn. 1:9). There are times that satan continues to torment us over past sins. It is important to share the sin with a Spirit-filled believer, allow them to pray, and find healing. Sins against us are also a fault. When an individual is abused, it causes a fault in them. The fault is like being shot with an arrow. An arrow must be removed before healing can come. Confessing the fault (the arrow), God’s healing begins. Jason will have to forgive dad hundreds of times because of the negative feelings that will come. This is normal. It will be important for Jason to continue to share the painful memories that he has suppressed with myself, another counselor, or Lisa, then pray and find healing. Jason’s and Lisa’s marriage has greatly improved. Praise the Lord!