April 11 – May 9, 2021
Discussion questions for week 2: Anger
1. What stood out to you from the message this past Sunday? Was there anything that seemed particularly relevant to you at this time? Was there anything you found difficult or disagreed with?
2. What comes to mind when you think of the word “anger”? How do you feel about anger in yourself? In others? In what ways have you experienced anger in a positive way? In what ways have you experienced it in a negative way?
3. Read John 2:14-16.
- What do you think was going through Jesus’ mind during this incident?
- Imagine yourself as a bystander: what would you think of Jesus, based on this incident?
4. In Ephesians 4:26 we read: “In your anger do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry”. What does this tell us about anger?
5. Which (if any) of the following do you struggle with:
- Denying or suppressing anger
- Becoming aggressive, manipulative, or otherwise negative in your words or behavior in response to anger
- Holding on to anger
Why do you think this is a struggle for you?
6. Share briefly any specific contexts or relationships where anger is a problem for you. Then take some time to pray for one another.
Practice for the Week – The Welcoming Prayer for Anger
The Welcoming Prayer is a prayer practice that helps us let go of unhealthy responses to certain emotions we are experiencing, while helping us to embrace more of God’s love.
Think of a situation or relationship that makes you angry in a way you feel may be unhealthy.
Step 1: Awareness Sit quietly and reflect on the situation for a moment. Notice how you are feeling. Focus and sink into your anger. Go toward it rather than suppress or resist it. Stay with this step of noticing and sinking in until you really experience a connection to the anger. You may feel it in your body, and it can help to place your hand there as a way of connecting with the emotion more deeply.
Step 2: Welcome Welcome the anger as a friend that is going to help you discover something about yourself, rather than as an enemy to be defeated. Don’t judge yourself, but simply accept how you are feeling right now. Say, “Welcome anger.” Repeat it, and sit with the feeling until you experience a genuine sense of owning and accepting it in this moment. Then allow yourself to honestly discern where the anger is coming from. Usually this is from a thwarted desire for one or more normal and basic human needs:
- Safety and security
- Esteem and affection
- Power and control
Step 3: Let Go When you have allowed yourself to accept the anger, and identified its source, let it go by saying, “God, I give you my anger.” Consciously let go of
- Your demand for safety and security in this situation/relationship.
- Your demand for esteem and affection in this situation/relationship.
- Your demand for power and control in this situation/relationship.
Rest in God’s loving, affirming and totally accepting presence.