The Flying Wrench

The Flying Wrench

The Flying Wrench

“Don’t befriend angry people or associate with hot-tempered people, or you will learn to be like them and endanger your soul.” Proverbs 22:24-25, NLT

Anger is an attitude that can be transferred to those you live or hang around with. It can also be generational until someone stops it in its tracks.

My Dad was an angry man for many reasons. He was unpredictable and an alcoholic. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my Dad but never really got to know him until he gave his heart to God in the mid 80’s. Here is some background on my dad: he was a WW2 veteran with two Purple Hearts. He was overseas for most of the war and even hit the beach in the Battle of Normandy. It was during the war that he heavily sedated himself with alcohol and drugs. I once asked him why and he quickly responded with this, “I was scared and the alcohol gave me courage.” Needless to say, he came home an alcoholic, struggling also with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. But it was never diagnosed, as PTSD was not even talked about until the 1980’s and the Vietnam Veterans struggled from battle fatigue. Al Thornton comes home an angry mess and guess who he gets to father? Yep, me and my two brothers.

Growing up I would observe him working around the house on many different projects, and when things didn’t go his way, his anger would rise and his face would get red, he would cuss and swear and throw things around. One day, as he was working on a project, he had a wrench in his hand and when he got mad he threw the wrench across the room, endangering anyone who was in the trajectory of the wrench. This wasn’t a one-time event, it happened often. And if you are wondering, yes, I started doing the same thing.

Anger, like other bad habits, is transferable. Before I was in the ministry I was working in a factory after I was first saved. I heard some cussing and swearing and I turned around just at the right time and I saw a wrench flying across the factory. I thought humorously to myself, “Is Dad here?” I hung around certain so-called friends in my teenage years and we went out on Friday or Saturday nights just to start fistfights and to break windows on cars. It was so sad and I knew I had to stop but I couldn’t control my anger – until I met Jesus.

It took time and my anger subsided, but it will rise once in a while. Remember, the the Word says: “Be angry but sin not” (Ephesians 4:26). Anger is an emotion to signal something to you. But it is not to lose your temper. Anger can be a healthy emotion to inform you that something isn’t right or there is an injustice, but whatever you do the Word says, “Be angry but sin not.” We all have our stories but for your sake and others let’s turn our anger over to Jesus. Yield to the fruit of the Spirit for it is the antidote for unhealthy emotions.

In closing, find good company. As the saying goes, “Show me your friends and I will show you your future.”


I will be angry but I will not sin


Father, You are so loving and understanding. Thank You for the abundant grace You have given me. I ask You to help me yield to the fruit of the Spirit and become Christ-like. In Jesus’ name, AMEN

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