Excerpt from Prayer Warrior Summit Formation by our Mother Foundress

“The prophet sent him (Naaman) the message: ‘Go and wash seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will heal, and you will be clean.’"  (2 Kings 5:10)

The first capital sin we want to look at is anger.  The fruit of anger will be division, bitterness, and unforgiveness.  Anger in itself is simply an emotion.  So anger of itself isn’t a sin, but it’s what we do with it that can make it sinful.  We always have a choice.  We can’t control an arising of an emotion in our hearts, but we can choose the way we’re going to use that emotion.  The will can command our emotion to rise, flourish, or decease.  We have control over our emotions if we choose to use our will.  So choice can make an emotion virtuous or it can make it a vice.  All of our emotions are God-given gifts.  It’s how we use them.  And when we’re not using them for God’s greater honor and glory, then Satan comes and uses them for his.

Jesus got very angry in the temple and drove out the moneychangers.  He was very angry with a righteous anger.  Jesus lives within our temple, within our bodies, and so Jesus can get very angry within us.  It’s righteous anger; it’s God’s anger.  You will get to know the difference.  Jesus’ anger will always be controlled; it doesn’t control you.  When we give into our anger and Satan takes over, we’re out of control and are usually in the enemy’s camp.  As long as the anger is controlled by God, it will serve a very fruitful purpose.  

St. Thomas Aquinas said anger is not the greatest of the capital sins, but it’s a capital sin because it leads to other sins.  He said hate is a far worse sin than anger.  Anger will lead to hate, which is the last stage of anger.  St. Thomas said that when we are at the level of hate, we are as bad as we can get.  Anger will lead to other sins.

There always needs to be discernment in the emotions because “God is love” (1 Jn 4:8).  God can hate anything that will try to destroy love, and so there are things that we hate.  There are things we should hate that will try to destroy God’s love and God’s love particularly in people.  Prayer warriors learn to hate what the actions are but not the person.  We don’t want to destroy what God has made.  We always want to pray that love will come into that person or situation.  So we too can hate a person’s actions, but not the person.  

“I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.”   (Jn 13:34)

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