January 5, 2015
Q: Gary, I just read your blog about releasing anger and giving it to God. I totally get that, but how do you continue to live with that person?
Gary Chapman: Don’t overlook the steps that need to be taken before you release the person to God. The Bible says if you’ve been hurt or offended—which is usually what stimulates anger—you should go to the person who has wronged you and confront them. The hope is that they will acknowledge their failure and it’s at this point that you can forgive them. However, if you do this and they still are not willing to apologize or admit their wrong, then release your anger and that person to God. Consequently, the relationship will not be a close one because you can’t be close to someone you feel has wronged you but unwilling to deal with it, but at least you’re not perpetually living with the anger.
November 6, 2014
Do you have memories of being mistreated as a child? Have your siblings treated you unfairly? When is the last time someone deeply hurt you? How did you respond? Jesus gave clear instructions: When we are mistreated we are to lovingly confront the person who hurt us and seek reconciliation. When we fail to do this the hurt and anger live inside and eventually make us bitter. A bitter man or woman will never reach his or her potential for God and good in the world. The first step in getting rid of anger is to make a list of all the people who have hurt you through the years and then release these people and your anger to God.
October 31, 2014
Q: Fighting in my marriage has really affected me. How can I be more patient and tolerant?
Gary: Fighting in a marriage is never healthy, unless we fight fairly. And most of us have never learned how to fight fairly. So we lash out at each other, we say harsh and mean things to each other, and consequently it creates a barrier between the two of us. I think we should always be willing to confess our failures and reach out and ask for forgiveness. Then, we have to learn new patterns of relating to each other. One of those patterns is to call a time-out. When you realize you’re about to get into a fight, simply call time-out and say, “I’ve got to take a walk, we’ll talk about this later.” If you do that, you’re more likely when you come back to have a civil conversation rather than a fight.