War Cry 4 - Song of Anger

An important part of overcoming anger is trusting God.

Doyle Jackson
Jul 29, 2018    32m
In this sermon Pastor Jackson talks about anger. He uses examples of how David dealt with anger from the Book of Psalms. He explains that anger comes from hurt and fear. Trusting God with your anger, and turning it over to Him to deal with, is the way to overcome your anger and be healed. Video recorded at Columbus, Ohio.

messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

Doyle Jackson: 00:01 Welcome, we've been doing a series this summer, we're reading through the Book of Psalms. If you've never done that in your life, we invite you just to join us, to jump right in, and start reading one or two psalms every day with us. You can start right where we are. We're in around 62, I think is where we are, 63 today, 67. And you just join in, and read with us every day. And this is why we're doing it, it's to get to know God's heart a little bit better. And one of the things that we've noted about David is this, he was really angry. There are a lot of things going on in his life, and he got really, really ticked about it. And he shares that, and he gives us what we're calling the song of anger. He teaches us how do you deal with your anger? And that's because we believe pretty much everybody gets angry. Everybody experiences anger, it's a part of life. So that's where we're going.

Doyle Jackson: 00:58 Alright, before I start, I have a confession to make. Alright? When I was younger, we used to have this TV show, it was kind of the first of the prank shows. It was called Candid Camera with Allen Funt. Allen Funt owned Tennessee walking horses, and he would show up in Tennessee at horse shows, where we would go and whatnot. And so I started watching this TV show, I thought it was hilarious. I thought it was great how he'd prank all these people. So I thought I could do it, and so I would take, you know, know the sprayer on the kitchen sink, and I'd either put a rubber band around the handle to keep it on, I learned that my mom could see that. And so I would learn to just take a toothpick, jam it in the top of it, break it off and walk away when they weren't looking. And then when they turn on the water, they'd get hosed down. You know what I'm saying? And you know what I learned from that? Not everybody thinks it's funny. Not everybody thought that Doyle was the cute, life loving, child that I was. I thought it was hilarious, and they would get angry, and it taught me something. It taught me that there's a very fine line between what's funny, and what causes us to be angry.

Doyle Jackson: 02:07 And it also taught me that it's just a part of life, it's emotion alright, and it's how you choose to deal with it. It's about how you choose to approach life, and deal with it. And the reason that we've been reading through the psalms is this, that the big why behind it is this, it helps us. It's helping us express ourselves to God. Why do you go to the store and buy a card for Mother's Day, for Father's Day, for an anniversary, for a birthday, for a get well card? The reason you buy a card is because you don't have words within you to fully express, you have an idea of where you want to go in this conversation. But you know, it's not like all of us is David Curtis, and we can sit down and write a song to express our feeling. You know what I'm saying? We struggle with that. And you don't feel any shame, no regret, for going out there and buying the words from somebody else. Why? Because the relationship is important, it's a relationship investment, you value the person enough. You're struggling with the words, but you say, I will buy the words in order to get me into this relationship the way I need to be.

Doyle Jackson: 03:29 Well, that's what the psalms is about. David was great with the words, and he gives you his words for the struggles that he was facing in life. And the question is this, are you and I willing to make the relational investment with God, and just use David's psalms to help you? You'll have to keep, you're in the car and you're trying to, you know, you just keep switching station til you find something that hits the mood that you're in. You may have to keep going through the psalms til you get the words that are where you're at right now. But David wrote them down, and the other authors of the psalms, so that you and I could express our heart to God. That's why we're reading psalms. Psalms help us express our heart to God. It's a relational investment, and if you can see that, then it will change your relationship with God, it will change everything about your life.

Doyle Jackson: 04:30 It says this in Acts chapter 13. It's in your notes, if you want to get your notes out. You can follow along on your app, that's great, you can take notes there too. This is what it says in Acts 13:36. It says, "Now when David had served God's purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep. He was buried with his ancestors." See, I believe that one of David's main purposes in his life was to write the psalms, David's main purpose in life was to lead Israel, he was to be the shepherd king. He was supposed to be the guy that knew what real life was like, and he did. He lived a real life, he lived a fantastic life, but it wasn't perfect. And through the psalms, we learn how he got through it. And the gift of God to you and I, in David's life, was the psalms, so you and I could deal with life. And if you and I will take that step of faith and just start reading the psalms out loud like they're ours, using them like they're your cards to God. It'll change your life, the way it changed David's life, to give these words about what he was going through to God.

Doyle Jackson: 05:46 Now sometimes we all feel angry, that's just a fact of life, everybody feels angry at some time. Listen to David's words here. This is Psalm 64:1, "Hear me my God, as I voice my complaint, protect my life from the threat of the enemy." I mean, do you hear him, he's like, I'm so ticked. You would be to if your father-in-law was hunting you down with a spear, and an army. I mean, come on, he had a lot of reasons to be angry. So I want you to do me a favor right now, I want everybody to take out one of these connect cards. And I want you under the prayer part of it right now, I want you to write down what's causing you to red line right now. What is causing you to really be upset? What is your point of anger? What is upsetting to you? Are you upset because somebody walked out on you? Are you upset because something went sideways, and you weren't expecting that? Are you upset about someone who's innocent, and they are being taken advantage of right now? That's okay, that's an emotion, and it's telling you something. It's saying something is not right here, And if you will write that down, and just share that with God, that's what David taught us. He said, whatever it is you're feeling, it's an indicator to you of what's going on in your life, and you need to take that and present it to God and he's going to help you sort it out.

Doyle Jackson: 07:21 Let me tell you about my own life. I hit the wall at one point in time, I was probably around 15. And things in my life were not going the way I had anticipated and I wanted them to, in several areas of my life, and it produced anger inside of me. And I got to the point where I had this false notion, I started to get this wrong thinking in my mind that anger was my friend. And I'll just tell you right now, anger is never your friend. If you've adopted that philosophy, it's not a healthy thinking, it just won't go well. But I started thinking that somehow that anger would make me stronger, that it made me more powerful, and all this stuff. And what was really going on, is I was upset that I was not getting the outcomes that I had hoped for in my life. One of the big things that really set me off was, I got to the end of that year of school, and I realized I was going to fail a class. And I knew what that failure meant for me, it meant everybody's going to know I failed this class. You see what I'm saying? It started impacting my identity, and I just got angrier and angrier about that. I got angry at God, I got angry at teachers. I just got angry, you know. And see the danger of this is if you allow anger to begin to have its place in your life, you'll start to love it. in. And it'll become like your little blanket. You've seen a little kid carrying around their blanket wherever they go. It became their little snuggly friend. And there are people, you may be one of those people, and I was starting to get to where I thought anger was my confidant, my friend. And it's not, it's an emotion. It's not your friend, be clear on that. It's an emotion, it's a response to what's going on.

Doyle Jackson: 09:31 Well, this anger had built up in me, and at that time I worked for my dad in the veterinary clinic all through high school and college. And I was an x-ray technician, and in those days x-rays meant you'd used literal film, right? And we would take film. it was huge, of a horse's knee. I mean some of them were even bigger. You'd take pictures, x-rays, of what was going on inside of it. And in my job was to develop it, after that got done. And I'm in this, we call it a dark room, but it was a closet. Okay? It was this little bitty room, with this great big tank, and I'm washing all this stuff. One time I'm in there, I'm washing one of these x rays, I'm getting it ready. And I hear the phone ring, alright? This morning when I did the first service, my phone literally rang right during the service, and I was like, oh great, you know? Well I didn't have such a good response years ago, because the phone just kept ringing. We didn't have voicemail, it just kept ringing and I'm just like, why is no one answering the phone? And because I thought anger was a good thing in my life, I was just, I'd been cultivating it, you know? I'd feed it in my life. So the phone kept ringing, I'm watching the clock, I get done the bell dings, I cover the lid on this thing because you can't open the door. The light will come in, and it'll destroy the film, and then you get in big trouble, you know? So finally I get it covered it up, I run out the door, I get to the phone, it stops ringing. I'm so mad I punched the wall, and that wouldn't have been bad, but I put a hole in it. Yeah, see? Then I had to go to my dad and explain how aliens had punched a hole in the wall. No, no. I had to go to my dad and I had to say, Dad, I got mad and I hit the wall and I made a hole in it. And my dad was great, he didn't try to drill down and ask me why, or bore into me. You know he didn't do all this stuff to try to deal with it. He said, okay, we can fix that. My dad knew that God was dealing in my life and at that point in time, he had the kindness, the generosity to let God finish what he was doing in me. See, anger doesn't have to run your life, but you do have to own why you're angry. You have to begin to look at it, and so I began to seek God, and I said, okay, God, this is why I'm angry. And I learned I had to share that with God, and just say, God, this is what's upsetting me right now, and that's what David did.

Doyle Jackson: 12:29 Let's listen to some more of David's words here. This is Psalm 68:1-3 says, "May God arise, may his enemies be scattered; may his foes flee before him. May you blow them away like smoke, as wax melts before the fire, may the wicked perish before God. But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; and may they be happy and joyful." What's David doing? David realizes I'm angry about all this stuff, but he David says, I've learned to hand it over to God. And now this is the key, when you take your anger, and you say, God, I'm upset about this and what's going on in my life, this is why I'm angry, this is the situation. What you're doing is you're handing it to God, and you're saying, God, I trust you to be judge. I trust you God to figure out what's going on here, and I trust you because I'm so engaged in this. I'm so close to this, I can't really be honest about it. I'm trying to get my outcome here, but I trust you God to bring about your purposes. And so you hand it over to God, and so what you're doing is you're saying, God, you can judge the situation, and God you can work it out.

Doyle Jackson: 13:39 And that's what David understood. David understood that God could deal with evil better than he could, that God could deal with his anger and the frustration, and what was going on his life. And he said, God, you be the judge, not me. And that's what the psalms is about. That's why you can go from David just like being so super ticked off, to saying, praise you, Lord, praise you, Lord. I know you've got this God, I know you've got this.

Doyle Jackson: 14:08 Listen to this one, this Psalm 69:22-24, May the table set before them become a snare, may it become retribution and a trap. May their eyes be darkened so they cannot see and their backs be bent forever. Pour out your wrath on them, let your fierce anger overtake them." David is not saying I'm going to do it. He's saying, God, I trust you, that you'll deal with this evil, and I know God, I know that your fierce anger. How could David say that? Because David knew that God knew when to bring punishment and judgment, even when he didn't, because he knew God's grace. David knew when he deserve God's total I should smite you David judgment, but God didn't do that. See David experienced God's grace. And see the truth of the matter, when we're angry, we have this little twinge inside of us that says, well, I'm not really sure God's going to be on my side on this. If I share it with him, he just might smoke me right now. And what David knew was this, if I'll hand it over to God, if I can share this with God, God will help me evaluate. And in His grace, he'll give me grace if that's what I need, and if I need him to deal with me, he'll deal with me. He loves me. He's going to deal with it. See, David, learn to trust God. And part of the reason we don't handle our anger, the reason we don't own our anger, and we try to justify it is because we don't really trust God.

Doyle Jackson: 15:42 Or you begin to think that it's your friend, and your buddy, and your like having it over for dinner. It won't, anger will never share with you anything good. It never hurts to share your pain with God, that's what David learned, that's what I've learned. And if you could just share your pain with God, it will go so much better. God knows your pain, that's why Jesus came to this world. He knows what you're suffering through. Jesus stepped into our world to experience this world and all its suffering. He knows your pain. What's amazing about David, when we read David, at times people are confused because they're like, that can't be David because that sounds like Jesus, and that's thousands of years apart. That's because David, in his pain and sharing his life, he became so close to Jesus, and he experienced many of the things that Jesus did. Listen to these words, listen to him. Psalm 69:20-21, "Scorn has broken my heart, and has left me helpless. I look for sympathy, but there was none; for comforters, but I found none. They put gall in my food, and gave me vinegar for my thirst." See, it sounds like Jesus, but that's because David and Jesus were best friends. And David had shared his life with God, and God was shaping his life, and he was working in his life. And as a result, at times, David looks kind of like Jesus, kind of like the Messiah. Because David came so we could find out what it would be like to have a loving, shepherd king. And Jesus is from the line of David, David and Jesus are a reflection of one another. And so at times when you're reading the psalms, you're seeing Jesus, and you're kind of confused by that.

Doyle Jackson: 17:37 Can I give you a simple analogy? I honestly don't think I'm smart enough to get this, I feel like really the Lord showed this to me. If you can begin to view your emotions differently, your emotions are the taste buds of your soul. And you don't get mad at your taste buds when they tell you that this is too hot, or when this has got too much sugar in it, like that could happen. See, your taste buds help you participate in the food. And something that's spicy, isn't bad, ask anyone of my Indian brothers and sister, we love spicy food. See, anger isn't bad, but we don't worship anger, we don't love anger. See what I'm saying? It's just an emotion that helps you. The question is, your response to life, and your emotions, is the kind of character you're going to have. If you ate too much sugar over time, it will harm your body. Your taste buds are there for you to keep a balance, to eat what's healthy and good for you. You need to experience it all. Your soul is here to help you move through life with God's help. And your emotions are there, whether it's joy or sorrow or pain or anger, so that God can shape you and work with you. And they're to tell you, they're warning lights. They're warning lights, they're gauges.

Doyle Jackson: 19:28 Anger is a reaction to pain. If you never get angry, then nothing matters to you. This is so helpful. If someone you're working with, if they start getting angry, they start raising their voice a little bit, you feel the tension start to come. Your response should immediately be, wow, this is really important to you isn't it. Tell me, can you tell me a little bit more? Why is this project so important? Why is this deadline? Tell me, what's the pressure here? I've got to know a little bit more about it. I'm sorry, I had no idea that mattered so much to you. Forgive me. And immediately the anger is going to go down. Why? Because you're recognizing that it matters. If you're the parent of a teenager, and they just start melting down, and their pitch gets higher and they just keep grrrrrr. Take a pause parent, and ask yourself this question, why does this matter so much to my teenager? And ask him, what's going on here? Whatever you do, don't say, oh, she's just overwhelmed with hormones. You're missing an opportunity as a parent.

Doyle Jackson: 20:47 So your emotions are the taste buds of your soul. And when someone shares what they're feeling with you, they're bringing you into their life, and they're doing life with you. And you need to respect that. The same way, if I share a meal with you, I'm doing life with you. I want you to taste what I taste, and live what I live. David is sharing what he learned from life, and he's saying, come with me, come with me. I can help you with that. I've been there.

Doyle Jackson: 21:30 That's why Jesus showed up. Folks, we are not participating in a religion. This is a relationship. Sharing with God brings a heavenly perspective, and that's what David said, that's what David learned. He would take his soul, and he would just pour it out to God. He would pour out what was going on, and God would help him work through that, and navigate his life. And God was constantly working to shape his life. Now, the test of anger, the test of anger is this, will my anger shape me, or will God shape me? Will my anger shape my life, or will God? See, anger is just an emotion, it's a response to a blocked whatever, it's a pain. Somehow we feel this anger, so the question is, well, why is it there? And see, God is trying to work in your life, he's trying to shape you. There's these beautiful sculptures that Michelangelo created, alright? And they're unfinished. They're works of art that he started with, and you can see how he started them. You can see the muscles, and you can just see how he was building, and you're like, man, I want to see the rest of that. You can see this, the form of this person in there, but it's not finished. And you're like, why, why did it not get finished? And when you and I, this is what happens, if you and I don't take our emotions, our anger, and give it over to God. He can't finish the work that he's doing in us, and we're unfinished work.

Doyle Jackson: 23:20 But look at Michelangelo's David. It's beautiful. That's because Michelangelo finished the work. And the guys that worked with him said he would work furiously. They would say he would stay up for days on end. He wouldn't change his clothes, wouldn't change his boots, because he'd say, it's in here. You know, he could see it, he was trying to draw it out. In the experiences of your life, the pain and the sorrow, the joys, the highs and the lows of your life, is God chiseling on your life. And he's trying to bring you out, into the light of day for his glory. He loves you, he cares for you. And if you're angry because it hurts right now, I'm sorry, but he's trying to bring about his glory and his purposes in your life. And if you can lean into it, and say, God, I trust you, I believe in you. I know that you know better than I do, it hurts right now. It's painful, and I don't like it. It's okay, he'll take your hand, and he's going to bring you through that. If that's what God is doing, as hard as it may seem.

Doyle Jackson: 24:31 David learned f I can lean into that, and share my heart with God, he would work in my life. I call this the PG13 version of David, because we're at church today, alright? It's beautiful. It's beautiful. You were designed for God's glory, to bring glory to him. The purpose of David's life was to bring glory to God. The purpose of your life, and my life, is to bring glory to God, and he's shaping us. And the question is, will we keep bringing our life back to him, and say, okay, God, I need a little work here, I need a little work here?

Doyle Jackson: 25:17 Psalms 66:12-19, and once again it's David, "You allowed men to ride over our heads. We passed through fire and water, but you brought us out into a wide open place. I will enter your temple with burnt sacrifices, I will fulfill the vows I made a to you, which my lips uttered, and my mouth spoke when I was in trouble. I will offer up to you fattened animals as burnt sacrifices, along with the smell of sacrificial rams. I will offer cattle and goats. Selah. Come! Listen, all you are loyal to God. I will declare what he has done for me. I cried out to him for help, and praised him with my tongue. If I had harbored sin in my heart, the Lord would have not listened. However God heard. He listened to my prayer." I have one question for you today, one challenge for you today, will you share your anger with God? Will you take whatever that is that has been making you so angry, and will you just hand it to him? Say, God, I can't carry this anymore, this isn't working for me, I want you to have it. I don't understand, it seems wrong, everything about it's not right. And it just makes me so mad, but I'm going to give it to you today. And then do what David did and say, God, I trust you, I praise you. I praise you because you are bringing me through, you're going to bring me out of this. And see, for you to give that to God verbally. See, David understood that somehow he had to get that out to God. Listen, I know so many people. I know so many people that say, yeah, I've read the psalms. Listen, there are songs that I've listened to at least a thousand times, and there are days when I need just to hear that song one more time. Hit play on it and sing it out in my car, or sing it out in my house, and get it out one more time. Because it helps me express what's going on in my life, and that's how it works. You would never go to the store and buy Liquid Plumber because you have a blockage in your sink, and then just set the can of Liquid Plumber on the counter. I don't know why this sink's not working, I bought the liquid plumber. Someone would walk in and go, idiot, you have to pour down the sink. You have to pour out your heart to God to get the blockage open.

Doyle Jackson: 28:34 I'm just saying, we have a wrong thinking, and it's destroying us. And some of these songs, I've sang every day for months. Until I can go back to God and say, thank you, Lord, you've washed me, you've cleansed me, you've made me whiter than snow. I'm a different man because of your love God, and I will praise you. See, that's what David is inviting us to. So as we end today, I want you to get your connect card out one more time. And I just want you to say, God, I want to thank you for loving me enough, for bringing blank into my life. I'm going to praise you, even though it doesn't feel good. See on that praise part, what are you going to praise God for? What are you going to thank him for in the midst of that situation? How are you going to say, okay, God, I'm trusting you, I believe you, I know it's got to get better than this. And then before you leave this place, give it to God. You can put it on the altar, or you can put them in the offering box in the back.

Doyle Jackson: 29:57 I want to give you our closing prayer, and while we're saying the closing prayer, you can hold up your connect. You can keep writing while I'm talking. You can hold your connect card in your hand while we say this prayer. This is what it says, I know there has to be a better way. Today by an act of my will, I choose David's method. God, I want to share my heart with you. I give you permission to adjust my thinking in life. Please protect the innocent, and save my life too. I know you'll deal with evil. And when we're done saying that prayer, I want to pray for you. So if you would stand, I would encourage you to hold your connect card with what you've written on there, as just kind of your sign of faith that you're believing God to deal with that, and then you give it to him before you leave. Alright? Let's say this prayer together. I know there has to be a better way. Today by an act of my will, I choose David's method. God, I want to share my heart with you. I give you permission to adjust my thinking in life. Please protect the innocent, and save my life too. I know you'll deal with evil. Amen. God, I thank you for the men and women, the young people that are in this room. And God, I pray that your healing power would restore their souls, restore my soul, the way you've done so many people in the past. Help us, Lord, help us to continue to run, and not grow weary. Help us to trust you, and help us to live life directed by you, and for your glory. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen. God bless you, thanks for coming. If you're a guest stop by in the back, or say hello to me, alright?

Recorded in Columbus, Ohio.
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