About a week ago, I received an email from a reader. She saw my post on overcoming disappointment, and she asked if I could help her. She is suffering in an unbearably unjust situation, and she is angry and resentful at the person causing it.
I can’t share her whole story, but the details are unimportant. Your anger and resentment are as real and honest and justified as hers are. They’re understandable.
And she’s looking for answers, just like you are.
I prayed about this woman and her family, and I prayed for you. I prayed that God would give me the words to help both of you.
My therapist says that anger is always masking a more vulnerable emotion. I think it’s helpful to look at that more vulnerable emotion and to deal with that, but you can come back to that later. For now, let’s just talk about the anger and resentment you’re feeling.
Table of contents
12 Bible Verses & 5 Steps to Overcoming Anger and Resentment
Concrete steps make sense to me. Give me a numbered list, and I’m a happy camper. So I created a numbered list for you.
Following the steps isn’t as easy as 1-2-3. The steps are where the real work lies. I am praying that you are challenged by these steps, and that you find a way to get through them all.
- Control your temper. (Let’s start right away with the hard stuff!)
When people mistreat us and there’s nothing we can do about it, we get angry. It isn’t fair. Parents see it in their young children who are constantly on the lookout to make sure everything is fair.
The gut reaction to get angry in the face of unfairness never really goes away. God’s Word says that we are to control our tempers, even in the face of unfairness.
Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs. -Proverbs 19:11
Earn respect. What if the respect of men isn’t what you’re after?
Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. -James 1:19-20
The righteousness God desires. Ouch. We may be able to brush off the respect of men, but the righteousness of God doesn’t go away so easily.
Do to others as you would like them to do to you. -Luke 6:31
When we overlook wrongs, we treat others the way we want to be treated. But what if the wrong is something really big? What if we can’t just get over it?
We still have choices. If the wrong is something monumental – abuse, neglect, criminal – then DO SOMETHING. Don’t just get angry, but take action. Enlist the help of someone who can stop it.
The reader who wrote to me has endured her situation for five months. Certainly, she has been slow to anger. But now, she is angry.
2. Don’t let your anger control you. God recognizes that sometimes, we do get angry. Often, we need to get angry to remedy a situation or to spur us on to action.
Don’t sin by letting anger control you. Think about it overnight and remain silent. -Psalm 4:4
He is saying to think about your situation, and see if it merits getting angry.
Are you saying something like, “YES! It does! I have a right to be angry. Is that wrong?”
Being angry isn’t a sin, but being controlled by anger is a sin.
And don’t sin by letting anger control you. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil. -Ephesians 4:26-27
So you’re angry. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry. Find a way to work out the anger, pray through the anger, move past the anger before you give the devil an in-road to your psyche.
Need a pick-me-up? Go do something kind for someone. Volunteer your time. Do good, forgetting about the person who’s made you angry for a while.
Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper – it only leads to harm. -Psalm 37:8
All scriptures are God-breathed, right? Every word is true. So what of this? Stop being angry?! How do you just stop?
3. You pray. Pray for yourself. Pray for the person who is making you angry. Pray for the situation. Pray that your heart will be softened and you’ll forgive.
People can’t change people. Only God can change people.
Right now, you need to be changed, and the person who’s hurt you needs to be changed. Give yourself permission to just focus on you for now. Ask God to change you and get rid of your anger despite the rotten situation you’re in.
But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. -Colossians 3:8, 12-13
You are holy and beloved, my friend. You are, and you deserve better than what this anger and resentment are doing to you.
4. Forgive. I said these steps weren’t going to be easy. Pray that you can forgive the person who’s making you angry. Pray it every day, every hour, every minute if you have to.
Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. -Ephesians 4:31-32
It’s the Golden Rule again. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Treat the person who’s made you angry with the same tenderhearted kindness that you treat your kids with.
I heard once that holding unforgiveness in your heart is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Unforgiveness is toxic to your soul. It affects every part of your life, and it manifests in sickness, in tension, and in anger.
Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven. -Luke 6:37
We are required to forgive as the Father has forgiven us. It is not optional – and it does not come easily.
5. Love. Forgiveness is one thing, but loving is another thing entirely. Loving your enemy – the very person who’s hurt you – is also required by scripture.
Not suggested, required.
The very thought makes me feel sick for you.
You don’t want to act in a loving way towards the person who’s hurt you. Not at all.
That’s where prayer comes in again. Pray that you’ll have compassion and kindness for that person. (And keep praying it until it happens.)
Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. -Luke 6:35
This passage goes on to say that even sinners are kind to those who love them, but it takes something special to be kind to an enemy.
You see, we don’t get to have vengeance. It’s not ours; it’s God’s alone. We are called to love God and love one another, the end.
Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone. Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God.
For the Scriptures say,
“I will take revenge;I will pay them back,”says the Lord.
Instead, If your enemies are hungry, feed them.
If they are thirsty, give them something to drink.In doing this, you will heapburning coals of shame on their heads.
Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good. -Romans 12:17-21
You see, Jesus didn’t just die for you, my righteous friend. He died for the person who’s hurt you, too. He loves both of you the same. It doesn’t seem fair (there’s a parable about that), but it is so.
Jesus died for both of you because you’re both sinners.
Different stories, different sins, same black marks.
For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. -1 Thessalonians 5:9-11
© 2015 – 2017, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.
by David (United States)
I pray that you allow good things to happen in life.
I also ask that you help us through the difficult times.
Let us know that you’re in our hearts and that you love us.
I thank you for joy.
I pray that you will heal my friend. Lead her to joy and salvation.
I thank you that she knows and loves you. Let her know that she
Is loved and cared for. Sheild her with your protective Hand.
Chase the enemy out of her head. Let her anger be replaced with joy
I thank you for her. I thank you for the power of healing.
Help me to show her the love and support she needs.
In your heavenly name I pray.
Return to Prayers for Healing
Omnipotent Everlasting Father, in every situation of my life, I give You full control. Your Word constantly reminds me that you care for me.
My spirit is broken, but through the workings of the Holy Spirit, it all works together for my good. My heart is broken, but You make me whole. Though I may experience pain, it just serves to make me stronger.
Psalm 37:8 Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; do not fret—it only causes harm.
Romans 12:21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
You are the Alpha and the Omega, the Author and finisher of my faith. Help me to focus on the blessings and positives in my life today.
As you examine my heart, Lord, search and reveal anything that is not of You that I may be set free.
May the Holy Spirit consume and heal our hearts, so that we may acquire that overflowing joy! Click To Tweet
James 1:19-20 So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
As circumstances attempt to overwhelm me, Lord fill me with Peace and Clarity. Help me to control my anger and rage, Oh Loving Father. Help me not to be consumed in it. I pray that sin would not emerge as the anger infests my mind.
You may also be interested in these articles:
- Prayer: For increase in the Fruit of the Spirit
- Praying In Times of Fear and Anxiety
- Prayer: All Things Work Together for Good
Colossians 3:8 But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.
I also pray for those struggling with anger, wrath and temper control as well. Calm their minds, bodies and souls.
May the Holy Spirit consume and heal me heart, today, so that I may acquire that overflowing joy.
In Jesus’ all-powerful name I pray, AMEN!
May the Holy Spirit consume and heal my heart today Click To Tweet
Ephesians 4:26, 29, 31 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath. Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.
2 Timothy 2:24-26 And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.
Relaxing Christian Meditation Music with Bible Verses about Anger (for Worship and Prayer)
Praying God’s Word for your marriage is one of the most powerful ways to watch God at work in your husband/wife’s life. When you pray the Scriptures for your spouse, you know that you are praying the will of God for his/her life, and you can have confidence that God wants the same for him/her as you do. If your spouse is struggling with anger, pray these Scriptures for him/her, knowing that God wants to deliver him/her from this struggle…
Bible Verses about Anger
Ephesians 4:26-31 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need. Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.
James 1:19-20 My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
Proverbs 29:11 A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.
James 1:20 For man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
Proverbs 19:11 A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense.
Ecclesiastes 7:9 Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.
Proverbs 15:1 A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Proverbs 15:18 A hot-tempered man stirs up dissension, but a patient man calms a quarrel.
Colossians 3:8 But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.
James 4:1-2 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God.
Proverbs 16:32 Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city.
Proverbs 22:24 Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered,
Psalm 37:8-9 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret–it leads only to evil. For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.
Proverbs 14:29 A patient man has great understanding, but a quick-tempered man displays folly.
Other posts you might like:
15 Bible Verses to Pray for Your Marriage
31 Days to Pray for Your Spouse Challenge
Pray for Your Spouse: Depression & Anxiety
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