Psalm 37:8 “Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret – it leads only to evil.”
Today it was my turn to say “do not fret.” Here I was playing “Angry Birds” (the board game version named after the popular video game) with my 7-year-old granddaughter. After numerous frustrating attempts to construct Level 1 buildings with two especially stubborn plastic game pieces, I said let’s just get a little duct tape and fix these two halves that are supposed to snap together, but don’t. This answer made the game immediately less annoying. Problem solved. The two halves became a whole. Fretting eliminated.
The duct tape helped to make construction with malfunctioning plastic pieces more attainable. An extraordinary “magic fixer” with multiple constructive uses – not just for ducts – Nana’s great “bandaid” momentarily cured all “fret-able” frustrations and permitted tower building to move forward at a reasonable pace. Game on. Rescued at last.
Being the polar opposite of a gamer, and being way out of my league concerning any games (with the exception of “Words With Friends”), I still want to record my impressions. The slingshot demolition objective of the game featured two angry birds – I am guessing Red and Hal? Red or Hal were alternately catapulted by each opponent toward some stacked plastic blocks and characters, including green pigs. Points were gained when the appropriate “angry bird” knocked over the entire stack, which of course, by design, was nearly impossible to accomplish beyond Level 1!
I don’t like the word “angry.” Not because I don’t get angry, but because anger can go south quickly, bearing a destructive connotation. I wonder what a 7-year-old thinks of a game called “Angry Birds.” I wonder what it teaches children about anger…
Scripture has a lot to say about anger. Mainly, be angry, but do not sin. It’s all about what we do with our anger, not that it is wrong to feel angry. I sure don’t want my granddaughter to equate demolition to the normal response of anger, except maybe on I-64 (just kidding). I suggest a name change for the game – to “Flying Birds.” Bring it down a notch.
Now that I reflect on it, I neglected to take advantage of the teachable moment to tell my granddaughter that angry birds, just like angry people, do not accomplish anything good when they go on the attack. I know it’s just a game. Maybe even harmless at times… Still, I pray that all my grandchildren understand God’s heart about anger. Proverbs 29:11 says “A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.” As God’s image-bearers, let us be encouraged to take on the character of Christ described in Exodus 34:6 which explains, “…The Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, (is) slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.”