EMOTIONS THAT CAN DESTROY A MAN
It was a Saturday afternoon and I was leaving the store. In the parking lot was a man in his mid twenties holding a baby. The baby was crying. But that wasn't what got my attention. What got my attention was the man's response to the baby crying. The man was cursing at the baby. Although I can't be sure it seemed that the man was angry because the baby was crying. It was as if the man was offended by this very natural reaction of the child to cry. As I watched the man continue to verbally assault the baby that he carried in his arms I wondered what caused the man to react in such a manner. Was he impatient or was he irritated? I wondered was he the child's father or the boyfriend of the child's mother? One thing was very clear to me, this man was responded emotionally to this baby and the display of his emotions revealed destruction.
I watched the man with the baby walk across the parking lot to his car and angrily put the child in the car seat cursing one more time as he slammed the car door. As I drove home I thought about that young man's emotions and then I begin to think about the negative emotions of men. Emotions that if not dealt with can destroy a man and those around him. The greatness in every man can be ruined by a man's inability to rule negative emotions. What a man doesn't control will control him.
Today I wanted to write about emotions that can destroy a man if he doesn't recognize them and deal with them. I will conclude this blog on next Monday. Today I am listing three emotions that can destroy a man and on next week I will list the remaining four.
1. Anger: A man is angry when he is displeased with himself or displeased with others. Many times a man will direct his angry at someone else when the object of his anger is himself. Anger is the hidden voice within a man. It wants to speak. It wants to say that I'm scared or I'm tired. It wants to say that I'm struggling but he doesn't speak because he's afraid to reveal his vulnerabilities. He shuts up the voice within himself and when the voice can no longer stand to be silent it screams instead of speaking. It yells because the voice is a prisoner wanting to be set free. The scream is anger.
2. Hate:Hate is pain turned outward. A man hates because of his history. Many men are taught to hate people. A few years ago a prominent clergymen was accused of preaching hate against America but what many of his critics didn't understand was his cry was the cry of pain. A pain born from a history of prejudice and racial intolerance. It was the cry of a wounded man who hadn't dealt with his pain and so his pain was turned outward. His hate represented his aversion to a history that he couldn't be free from. When a man is in pain a man will hate. The first murder in the world is in recorded in Genesis chapter 4. Cain murdered his brother Abel because of hate. Cain hated his brother because God approved his act of worship and God rejected Abel's act of worship. God didn't reject Cain but he rejected his worship. And when God confronted Cain about his offering and the sin that was about to overcome him Cain responded by turning his anger at God into hate toward his brother. One day they two were in the field, a place of partnership and fellowship and Cain killed his only brother.
3. Bitterness: A man becomes bitter when he is not able to accept his life. Bitterness is a man's response to his refusal to accept or forget something that happened in the past. Many men become consumed by bitterness because he can't get over the unfairness of yesterday. A lost job. A lost opportunity. A lost relationship. When a man does not release disappointments from his past he will impose those disappointments on others. Hebrew 12: 15b says, "Lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled." Bitterness is a seed that has been allowed to grow in a man's heart until it comes forth as a harvest. When it comes forth it brings trouble in a man and it defiles him and everyone that he is connected to.