My serpent

Hello to all readers. Learning to deal with anger – both my own and other people’s, has always been the most challenging aspect of life to me. At the moment, I’m having to concentrate on my own. Today’s prayer describes something personally significant that I started to learn about last week…

My serpent
* Be angry but do not sin (Ephesians 4:26; NRSV).
* Do not let your mouth lead you into sin (Ecclesiastes 5:6; NIV).
* The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing 
(Proverbs 12:18; NIV).
* To humans belong the plans of the heart, but from the LORD comes the proper answer of the tongue (Proverbs 16.1; NIV).

When someone hurts me,
I’m programmed from childhood
To crush my anger down at once,
Right down to my gut,
Where it writhes like a wounded serpent,
Until I feel as if death itself
Is about to strike.

I’ve always called this vile sensation
But I was wrong, Lord;
It’s not dread at all –
It’s suppressed anger!

I want to recognise my anger quickly,
Rather than crushing it –
Which hurts me,
Or spewing it out –
Which hurts others.

Help me to share my anger with you.
Then I will understand
Whether I need to act on it,
And how to do so wisely.

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