Your petitions—though they continue to bear just the one signature—have been duly recorded. Your anxieties—despite their constant, relatively narrow scope and inadvertent entertainment value—nonetheless serve to bring your person vividly to mind. Your repentance—all but obscured beneath a burgeoning, yellow fog of frankly more conspicuous resentment—is sufficient. Your intermittent concern for the sick, the suffering, the needy poor is sometimes recognizable to me, if not to them. Your angers, your zeal, your lip smackingly righteous indignation toward the many whose habits and sympathies offend you— these must burn away before you’ll apprehend how near I am, with what fervor I adore precisely these, the several who rouse your passions.
Deal with anger before the sun goes down, asserts the apostle Paul (Eph. 4:26). Why? Because unchecked anger dominates our outlook and even our prayers — “Your petitions—though they continue to bear just the one signature—have been duly recorded.” Yes, our “intermittent concern for the sick” sometimes rises, but we mostly want to vent toward “the many whose habits and sympathies offend you.” If we knew our “angers” and “lip smackingly righteous indignation” was diminishing our communication with others—and even God—would we care? Could we stop even if we wanted? – Timothy Muehlhoff