Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Selfishness of Irritation

Have you ever considered how selfishness generally drives your irritation? Consider this portion of an article from Desiring God:



The Selfishness of Irritation
Our irritability never has its roots in the soils of righteousness. It springs out of the soil of selfishness and springs up fast, like the sin-weed that it is. We get irritated or easily provoked, not when God’s righteousness or justice is scorned, but when something we want is being denied, delayed or disrupted. It works like this:
  • When I’m weary I want rest, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m sick or in pain I want relief, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m preoccupied I want uninterrupted focus, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m running late I want to avoid appearing negligent, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m disappointed I want my desire fulfilled, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m fearful I want escape from a threat, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m uncertain I want certainty, preferably reassuring, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.
  • When I’m enjoying something I want to continue until I wish to be done, but if it’s denied/delayed/disrupted I get irritated.

Do you ever find yourself doing those things? I can think of personal examples, and I'm sure you can as well. The article continues...
  
"The reason irritability is unloving, unrighteous anger is that it is a selfish response to an obstacle to our desire. What we desire may not be sinful, but a selfish response to its denial, delay or disruption is a failure to trust God at all times (Psalm 62:8)—and often a failure to value, love, and serve another human soul.

Jesus didn’t die for our punctuality, earthly reputation, convenience, or our leisure. But he did die for souls. It is likely that the worth of the soul(s) we’re irritable with is infinitely more precious to God than the thing we desire. We must not dishonor God, whose image that person bears, by being irritable with them. There are necessary times for considered, thoughtful, measured, righteous, loving anger at priceless but sinful souls. But there is never a right time for irritability. Love is not irritable."


You can read the conclusion for how to biblically deal with irritation here.
 

Allison

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