Do You Need To Apologize For Your Anger?

​Something I read a couple weeks ago has sort of stuck in my spirit. I can’t quite shake it, but I feel as though it is a stern warning to us all...and some of you more than others right at this very moment.
As I read 2 Samuel 6 one morning, this line stuck with me, “David was angry because the Lord’s anger had burst out against Uzzah” (New Living Translation). To put a little context to this text, David was angry because God had just dropped Uzzah dead on the spot. David and his men had been moving the Ark of the Lord back into Jerusalem. However, instead of carrying the Ark (something that had been commanded in Numbers 4:5–6), they rolled it on a cart just like the Philistines had done. Instead of following the law of Moses, the Israelites were following the ways of the world. So as the oxen proceeded down the road, they stumbled and the Ark began to wobble. In order to steady the Ark, Uzzah reached out and touched it. Second violation. No one but the priest was allowed to touch the Ark.
Maybe it was because the Ark had been so disregarded during Saul’s reign (he never brought it back to Jerusalem), people forgot its holiness. Perhaps because the Ark had resided for so long in Uzzah’s home, he became too familiar with the Ark (familiarity sometimes breeds complacency). Regardless, this was the day God decided to punish Uzzah for the sin against the Ark. God was about to show His people that He still meant business.
However, David’s response in this moment was a little out of character. Instead of instantly bowing down and repenting for the grave sin that had been committed…one that David had in fact been a part of by not stopping the transportation issue in the first place, David became angry at God.
How many times have you gotten angry at God? Are you mad at God maybe even right now?
In the verse after David’s anger, we see that David “was now afraid of the Lord” (2 Samuel 6:9). As if David had just been reminded, “Hey David, I’m still in charge here,” David began to think he wasn’t worthy of being in charge of the Ark after all (2 Samuel 6:9–11).
David’s transition is healthy, but my concern lately is what happens between the anger and the fear? What happens when we don’t seek God’s forgiveness for our anger against Him? What sorts of things grow in that space?
As I reflected on these verses, I wondered if this was the beginning of David’s end. Was this where the seed of pride was planted as David made the decision to stay at home in the spring when he should have been at war just five short chapters later (2 Samuel 11)? Because he was home and not at war, he committed the act against Bathsheba which eventually led David to have Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah, killed?  
Some dear friends of mine are fighting a major battle right now. She’s in the place of being angry with God, but my fear is that if she doesn’t repent and seek God’s forgiveness for her attitude toward Him, I don’t know what kind of seeds will be planted that the enemy could stir up later down the road.

When we fail to follow God’s ways, there are consequences. We don’t like the consequences and instead of seeing the goodness and justness of God, we get mad at Him. We often think that God is great until we get found out. Or we know about His rules, but don’t think they apply in every situation so we get mad when we figure out they do apply in every situation.
Our complacency and righteous indignation are often what harm us the most. We become numb to God and His ways because we get comfortable and pride follows. And well, pride comes right before a fall (Proverbs 16:18).
David eventually confessed the error of his ways regarding the Ark, and he eventually worshipped and brought the Ark into Jerusalem, but I believe a piece of his heart was hardened that day. Sure, he made sacrifices and danced in public, but we never see that he repented of anger toward God that day. Some of us do that, too. We publicly worship God on Sunday or mid-week, but in the secret place of our heart, we are holding on to our anger against Him.
If this is you and there is or has been something you have been angry at God about, have you asked God to forgive you for your behavior toward Him? If not, I would encourage you to do that today. Don’t blame others or feel justified in your anger (because honestly, there is never a reason to stay angry with God), just confess it, tell Him you are sorry, and ask Him to forgive you.
He’s a loving Father who will extend His grace to those who seek Him with all of their heart.

Erin Olson

Founder and CEO of Sandalfeet Ministries

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