Whenever the subject of anger comes up between Christians, its common to hear a rationale that goes something like, “Well, Jesus Christ got angry when he turned over the tables in the temple, so it’s okay to be angry.” Ephesians 4:26(NKJV) tells us, ““Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath,” This gives us some meaningful context about the emotion of anger. We all get angry from time to time. God warns us not to allow our anger to control us, particularly to the point of carrying it with us to bed at night. The problem is that many of us not only let the sun go down on our wrath, we harbor it to full-blown deep and tormenting resentment. That’s when anger insidiously betrays us. It can explode out of nowhere.
Typically, deep-seeded anger is different from that of ordering two fast food hamburgers and finding only the buns with nothing between them when you get home. Still hungry and mildly frustrated, most of us would get over this fairly quickly. But in today’s climate, even simple mishaps and seemingly minor infractions have caused some people to go completely off. It doesn’t take much to surmise that a powder keg has been simmering underneath, waiting for an opportunity to unleash. We see a lot of this expressed through road-rage, something that was virtually unheard of some twenty years ago.
Road-rage was Quaneesha’s wake-up call. She never learned much about cleaning up a kitchen or tidying up a living space, but the one thing she keeps immaculate is her car. It’s a bucket, but it’s hers, and she cherishes that car. She didn’t think she’d ever have a car of her own because for the longest while she lacked the confidence to drive. Even after a few driving lessons, she was convinced that she’d never be able to do it. She was 26 years old when she discovered that driving wasn’t nearly as scary as she once thought, and now she loves to drive.
Her abuser used her insecurity about driving to keep her isolated, afraid, and under his control. God has given us many precious gifts. He’s given us the authority to succeed and triumph in our own personal lives, and to live them to the fullest. The one thing that He did not give us was power over another person’s free-will choice. 2Corinthians 3:17 tells us, “For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” Liberty is a defining characteristic of the goodness of God. He’s given it to us through Jesus Christ, and in Galatians 5:1, He warns us to never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on us!
The ugliness of our own fears is that sometimes we grow dependent on others in extremely detrimental ways. We allow them to usurp the liberty and strength that God has given us. We develop a habit of moving from fear to fear. Growth is stunted and self-confidence is compromised whenever we attempt to swap one form of bondage for another. We were created to live free.
Abusers prey upon our weaknesses and fears, and often use them to gain and maintain control over us. God tells us in Romans 8:37 that we’re more than conquerors through Jesus Christ, who loves us. I don’t care how weak or strong we believe ourselves to be, through Christ, we are always exponentially stronger than we think. Quaneesha witnessed this when her abuser and ex-boyfriend, Richard, was involved in a road-rage incident that almost cost them their lives. When it happened, he tore out of his car without any regard for his own life or her safety. It was the wrong place, the wrong time, and the wrong people to mess with, and Richard almost didn’t survive the showdown. To save them both, Quaneesha had to drive, there was no other way.
She saw Richard in a different light. It made her face the reality that she had spent most of her life on the edge, for fear of someone else’s rage. Until that moment, she had not realized how exhausted she was with living that way. Richard had not protected her, as a matter of fact, the thought had not even crossed his mind. Rather, she protected him. Sister girl drove that night!!! She faced double jeopardy and slayed that dragon of fear and oppression. Quaneesha kept right on driving. She drove Richard out of her life and her out of his. Through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, we’re stronger than we think, and as our trust in him grows, so will our confidence in ourselves.■
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
“Quaneesha, the Dragon Slayer” written by Fran, edited by PMB for DomesticAbuseAwareness.Org ©2018. All rights reserved. All done to the glory of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord!