Prayer For Help With My Anger And Resentment
12 Bible Verses to Overcome Anger & Resentment
About a week ago, I received an email from a reader. She saw my post on overcoming disappointment, and she asked if I could help her. She is suffering in an unbearably unjust situation, and she is angry and resentful at the person causing it.
I can’t share her whole story, but the details are unimportant. Your anger and resentment are as real and honest and justified as hers are. They’re understandable.
And she’s looking for answers, just you are.
I prayed about this woman and her family, and I prayed for you. I prayed that God would give me the words to help both of you.
My therapist says that anger is always masking a more vulnerable emotion. I think it’s helpful to look at that more vulnerable emotion and to deal with that, but you can come back to that later. For now, let’s just talk about the anger and resentment you’re feeling.
12 Bible Verses & 5 Steps to Overcoming Anger and Resentment
Concrete steps make sense to me. Give me a numbered list, and I’m a happy camper. So I created a numbered list for you.
Following the steps isn’t as easy as 1-2-3. The steps are where the real work lies. I am praying that you are challenged by these steps, and that you find a way to get through them all.
- Control your temper. (Let’s start right away with the hard stuff!)
When people mistreat us and there’s nothing we can do about it, we get angry. It isn’t fair. Parents see it in their young children who are constantly on the lookout to make sure everything is fair.
The gut reaction to get angry in the face of unfairness never really goes away. God’s Word says that we are to control our tempers, even in the face of unfairness.
Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs. -Proverbs 19:11
Earn respect. What if the respect of men isn’t what you’re after?Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. -James 1:19-20
The righteousness God desires. Ouch. We may be able to brush off the respect of men, but the righteousness of God doesn’t go away so easily.
Do to others as you would them to do to you. -Luke 6:31
When we overlook wrongs, we treat others the way we want to be treated. But what if the wrong is something really big? What if we can’t just get over it?
We still have choices. If the wrong is something monumental – abuse, neglect, criminal – then DO SOMETHING. Don’t just get angry, but take action. Enlist the help of someone who can stop it.
The reader who wrote to me has endured her situation for five months. Certainly, she has been slow to anger. But now, she is angry.
2. Don’t let your anger control you. God recognizes that sometimes, we do get angry. Often, we need to get angry to remedy a situation or to spur us on to action.
Don’t sin by letting anger control you. Think about it overnight and remain silent. -Psalm 4:4
He is saying to think about your situation, and see if it merits getting angry.
Are you saying something , “YES! It does! I have a right to be angry. Is that wrong?”
Being angry isn’t a sin, but being controlled by anger is a sin.And don’t sin by letting anger control you. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil. -Ephesians 4:26-27
So you’re angry. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry. Find a way to work out the anger, pray through the anger, move past the anger before you give the devil an in-road to your psyche.
Need a pick-me-up? Go do something kind for someone. Volunteer your time. Do good, forgetting about the person who’s made you angry for a while.
Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper – it only leads to harm. -Psalm 37:8
All scriptures are God-breathed, right? Every word is true. So what of this? Stop being angry?! How do you just stop?
3. You pray. Pray for yourself. Pray for the person who is making you angry. Pray for the situation. Pray that your heart will be softened and you’ll forgive.
People can’t change people. Only God can change people.
Right now, you need to be changed, and the person who’s hurt you needs to be changed. Give yourself permission to just focus on you for now. Ask God to change you and get rid of your anger despite the rotten situation you’re in.
But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. -Colossians 3:8, 12-13
You are holy and beloved, my friend. You are, and you deserve better than what this anger and resentment are doing to you.
4. Forgive. I said these steps weren’t going to be easy. Pray that you can forgive the person who’s making you angry. Pray it every day, every hour, every minute if you have to.
Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. -Ephesians 4:31-32
It’s the Golden Rule again. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Treat the person who’s made you angry with the same tenderhearted kindness that you treat your kids with.
I heard once that holding unforgiveness in your heart is drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Unforgiveness is toxic to your soul. It affects every part of your life, and it manifests in sickness, in tension, and in anger.
Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven. -Luke 6:37
We are required to forgive as the Father has forgiven us. It is not optional – and it does not come easily.5. Love. Forgiveness is one thing, but loving is another thing entirely. Loving your enemy – the very person who’s hurt you – is also required by scripture.
Not suggested, required.
The very thought makes me feel sick for you.
You don’t want to act in a loving way towards the person who’s hurt you. Not at all.
That’s where prayer comes in again. Pray that you’ll have compassion and kindness for that person. (And keep praying it until it happens.)
Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. -Luke 6:35
This passage goes on to say that even sinners are kind to those who love them, but it takes something special to be kind to an enemy.
You see, we don’t get to have vengeance. It’s not ours; it’s God’s alone. We are called to love God and love one another, the end.
Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone. Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God.
For the Scriptures say,
“I will take revenge;
I will pay them back,”
says the Lord.
If they are thirsty, give them something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap
burning coals of shame on their heads.
Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good. -Romans 12:17-21
You see, Jesus didn’t just die for you, my righteous friend. He died for the person who’s hurt you, too. He loves both of you the same. It doesn’t seem fair (there’s a parable about that), but it is so.
Jesus died for both of you because you’re both sinners.
Different stories, different sins, same black marks.
For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. -1 Thessalonians 5:9-11
Download these Bible verses on anger and resentment in a convenient black and white printable below. You can work on memorizing and meditating on them, one at a time
If you need help with a system for memorizing verses, check out this post on our family’s memorization habit.
© 2015 – 2019, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.
What Does the Bible Say about Bitterness and Resentment?
When you are offended or disappointed by others and allow the hurt to germinate in your heart, bitterness and resentment will take root.
Characterized by an unforgiving spirit and generally negative, critical attitudes, bitterness and resentment are sinful and self-defeating. They will color your conscious and unconscious thoughts and actions.
Allowed to fester, they will destroy and kill (Galatians 5:19-21). However, they can be dispelled with love.
What Scripture Says
«Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many» (Hebrews 12:14,15).
«Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you» (Ephesians 4:31,32).
«When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly» (1 Peter 2:23).
«Jesus said, Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing…» (Luke 23:34).
«For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins» (Matthew 6:14,15).
«Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: 'It is mine to avenge; I will repay,' says the Lord. On the contrary: 'If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.' Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good» (Romans 12:14-21).
How to Be Free from Bitterness and Resentment
depression and other emotional stress, bitterness and resentment can aggravate or cause physical problems such as arthritis. You can be affected mentally, spiritually, and otherwise. Your relationships will always suffer.
God can free you from this sin. It is an oppressive and destructive emotion having its root in hate, which is ned to murder. You must repent. No one can have peace and happiness with such emotions tearing at him. If you have not done so, ask God to forgive you and to come into your life right now. He will deliver you from the power of the enemy (Psalm 91:3).
If you are already a Christian, you should still ask God to forgive you for being bitter and resentful. Then ask Him to forgive anyone who may have hurt you, and toward whom you are bitter or resentful, even as He forgives you.
Seek to be baptized with the Holy Spirit if you are not already. Look for opportunities to demonstrate love to the person who offended you.
God forgives and forgets sin. However, you may have made your best effort to forgive and forget and find that you cannot. God can help you to cleanse your memory.
Instead of remembering with malice and hurt, remember with forgiveness. Then go one step further and ask God to forgive your offender.
By forgiving and then asking God to forgive your offender, you release God to bless you and the other person.
As You Pray
Pray in this manner:
Father, I acknowledge that I've held resentment and bitterness against _______________. I confess this as sin and ask you to forgive me. I forgive __________________. Remind me, Lord, to not hold any more resentments, but rather to love this person. Father, I ask you to also forgive ______________________.
Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus' name, Amen.
If you prayed that prayer, please let us know. You can call our National Prayer Center at (800) 823-6053. We would love to talk with you and send you some literature to help you continue in your walk with the Lord.
Scripture references are taken form the New American Standard translation of the Bible.
BITTERNESSActs 8:23Romans 3:14Ephesians 4:31Hebrews 12:15
ENVYPsalms 37:1Proverbs 3:31Proverbs 23:17Galatians 5:26Genesis 26:14
HATREDLeviticus 19:17Proverbs 10:12Proverbs 15:171 John 2:9 1
MALICE1 Corinthians 5:81 Corinthians 14:20Colossians 3:81 Peter 2:1Esther 3:6Psalms 140:3Isa. 59:4,5Matt. 27:23John 12:10
23 Short Prayers — Hope for Your Soul
Whether you have had a personal relationship with God for years or you are only beginning to discover who Jesus is, we all need guidance sometimes when it comes to prayers. It’s often hard to find the words to pray, that’s why we put together this collection of short prayers.
The following short prayers offer guiding words to use for praying over various topics including worry, anxiety, doubt, forgiveness, fear, and other areas of life where we need to ask for God’s help.
Please use these prayers and allow the Holy Spirit to guide you as you add some of your own words and personalize your petitions to God.
Prayer for Peace
Father God, my heart is filled with chaos and confusion. I feel as if I am drowning in my circumstances and my heart is filled with fear and confusion. I really need the strength and peace that only You can give. Right now, I choose to rest in You. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen. ~ Mary Southerland.
Prayer for the Broken-Hearted
Lord, my heart is broken but You are near. My spirit is crushed, but You are my rescuer. Your Word is my hope. It revives me and comforts me in especially now. My soul faints, but you are the breath of life within me.
You are my help, the One who sustains me. I am weak but You are strong. You bless those who mourn, and I trust You to bless me and my family with all that we need. You will rescue me from this dark cloud of despair because You delight in me.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Jennifer White
Prayer for Perseverance
Holy Lord, Thank You for grace. Please help me move beyond the hurdles that trip me up and give me the strength and wisdom to look up and see the hope I run toward in Christ. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Gwen Smith
Prayer for Self Control
Father, today I ask forgiveness of all the negative and harmful words I have spoken about myself. I do not want to abuse myself in such a way again. Transform my thoughts and let me understand how marvelously you made me. Change my habits so I use my tongue to speak hope and favor upon my life. In Jesus' name, Amen. ~ Sarah Coleman
Prayer for Loving Jesus
Father, I have to thank You for looking beyond my faults and for loving me unconditionally. Forgive me when I fail to love others in the same way. Give me eyes to see the needs of the difficult people in my life, and show me how to meet those needs in a way that pleases You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Mary Southerland
Prayer for God’s Direction
Lord, help me not to lean on my own understanding but in everything acknowledge You so that You can direct my words, thoughts and actions. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Sharon Glasgow
Prayer For Worry
Father, I am tempted to worry about so many things. Our world is a mess! Forgive me for focusing on anything or anyone but You. Thank You for the Bible that equips and empowers me to live each day. Right now, I declare that You are my only Hope. Please help me remember that You really are in control. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Mary Southerland
Prayer for God’s Strength
Lord, thank you for your greatness. Thank you that when I am weak, you are strong. Lord, the Devil is scheming and I know he desires to keep me from spending time with you. Don’t let him win! Give me a measure of your strength so that I might not give into discouragement, deception and doubt! Help me honor you in all my ways. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Debbie Przybylski
~ Debbie Przybylski
Prayer When Feeling Inadequate
Dear Lord, Thank You for fearfully and wonderfully creating each of us. Thank You for giving us worth in Your eyes. Help us live as the one You uniquely intended us to be. Help us abide instead of strive, living peacefully and joyfully as heirs to Your Kingdom and co-heirs with Christ. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Julie Sunne
Prayer for Being Grateful
Father, I am so sorry for the way I complain about my circumstances. Please forgive me for my bad attitude when things don't go my way.
I want to see Your hand in every part of every day — good or bad.
Help me learn how to face every storm with confidence, knowing that You really are in control even though I cannot hear Your voice or see Your hand at work. In Jesus Name, Amen. ~ Mary Southerland
Prayer of God’s Provision
Dear Father God, Thank You for Your unfailing love for me, Your blessings, and goodness. Thank You for Your faithfulness to guide me and see me through times of uncertainty, for lifting me up, and setting me on high.
Thank You for Scripture that comforts and reminds me of Your promises, plan, and provision. Thank you for taking away my fears and worries, the what-ifs, and reminding me that my help comes from You. Help me be a good steward and to sow wisely.
In Christ’s Name, Amen. ~ Renee Davis
Prayer for Growing Faith
Dear Lord, help me — every single morning — to find faith in the midst of the chaos. Give me the desire and ability to see You, hear You, talk to You, and give thanks to You.
And as I do, I pray that I will draw nearer and nearer to You, and that my faith will multiply exponentially as I understand in new, deeper ways that You are everything I ever hoped You would be. And so much more.
Amen. ~ Kelly O’Dell Stanley
Prayer for Confidence
Lord, help me let go of my fear of failure. I know Satan wants to use my fears to hold me back from living boldly for You.
Forgive me for not living in faith, and help me from this moment on to live with bold confidence in You. Lord, help me not compare myself to others around me.
I pray instead that I can keep my eye on You and live a life that proclaims Your excellence. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen. ~ Rick Warren
Prayer for a Heavy Heart
Lord, I want to lay before you all that weighs heavy on my heart. Reveal even the sin I am not aware of, Lord. I lay these at your feet and pray your forgiveness on me. I believe you when you say that you wash us whiter than snow. Thank you Lord for your unending love for me! Help me start fresh right now to make choices that honor you. In Jesus' Name, Amen. ~ Rick Warren
Father, sometimes it does feel that you have left us in the battle. We know that you are with us, but so are our feelings of aloneness. The Enemy seems to be taking ground. Our crying out to you seems to go unanswered. We know you are at work, but help us trust you in the midst of our questions. In Jesus' Name, Amen. ~ Ron Moore
Short Prayer for Thankfulness
God, sometimes life gets me down and I find it hard to see things to be thankful for. Open my eyes to see the gifts you’ve given me in my life. I’m going to start by thanking you for loving me enough to come to earth and die so we can live together forever. Amen. ~ Wendy van Eyck
Prayer for Restored Relationships
Father God, open my eyes to see the ways I’m Cain.
What conflicts am I allowing to brew in my family? What anger is bubbling into murderous rage in my relationships? Thank You for the clarity to see how hatred kills relationships.
I choose instead the way of love. Love protects. Help me to protect those I love by loving them. Your way is always best, Father. I pray in Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ James MacDonald
Which one of these short prayers spoke the most to you and how can we be praying for you? Comment below and let us know!
This article is part of our larger Prayers resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Visit our most popular prayers if you are wondering how to pray or what to pray. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can't find the words to pray.
Prayer for Healing
Prayer for Strength
Prayer for Protection
Good Night Prayers
A Birthday Prayer
Prayer for Forgiveness
Prayer for Guidance
Prayer for Peace
Prayer for Faith
Prayer for Love
13 Powerful Prayers for Overcoming Anger and Resentment
When life knocks us down, it is easy to start harboring anger for the things that have happened. These powerful prayers for overcoming anger and resentment serve as the perfect example to the type of ways you can seek relief from the Lord.
Heavenly Father, I am struggling right now, Lord, and You are my Savior and my Support. Please awaken Your Holy Spirit within my heart so that I can move forward with sincerity and with perseverance.
Lord, I want to move on from this heaviness in my heart and to move from hatred to forgiveness … from anger to peace. Fill me with the light and awareness of Your presence and help me to become the loving child that You created.
I thank You, and praise You in the mighty name of Jesus. Amen.
Father, I repent and renounce and release the dependency by which I’ve lived until now. Whatever the roots—self-doubt, self-hatred, self-loathing, etc.
—I release the sense that I need anything or anyone but You and Your truth to get me through the day and through this life.
Remind me, moment by moment, that my God will meet all my needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).
Loving Lord I place that anger and bitterness that I too often harbour in my heart at Your feet and pray that in Your grace You will expose all that is causing the bitter poison that is lodged within my heart to surface so often – and set me free from it, I pray.
Lord I confess all my anger and bitterness and know that when I allow this to surface in my heart it breaks the fellowship we have together.
I know that when I confess my anger You are faithful and just to forgive the outbursts of anger in my heart and to cleanse me of all unrighteousness, for which I praise Your name.
But Lord I desire that I am set free from this pollution within my heart so that the root of anger shrives us within – and ask You to examine me and root out all that is not pleasing in Your sight.
Thank You in Jesus name, Amen.
God, hear me and answer me. You know I am troubled by thoughts and feelings of anger, resentment and bitterness. You also know why. And You know how deep the hurt goes and how long I have lived with it. But I don’t want to live with it any longer.
I don’t want to be an angry, resentful and bitter person. With Your help, I release my anger into Your hands. I surrender my resentment. I let go of my bitterness. Help me to keep letting go and release these toxic emotions as often as they try to return.
Heavenly Father I ask You to examine my heart for there is a well of anger and resentment deep within my soul, and I keep drawing on that bitter water rather than drinking daily of the waters of life that flow into a heart that is looking to Jesus.
Examine my heart Lord and root out all the bitterness and resentment that is so deeply rooted within me. Search the inner depth of my soul and expose all my suppressed hurt and resentment for it is only in You that I can be set free of the pain deep within.
Thank You Father that You forgave all my sins at the cross of Calvary and I believe that You paid the full price all my sins – including all the anger in my heart – anger that still surfaces too frequently from time to time. I pray that in Your grace You will free me from all traces of anger and create in me a heart of love and forgiveness –so that I may grow more and become more Jesus, Amen
Father, I acknowledge that I’ve held resentment and bitterness against (name). I confess this as sin and ask You to forgive me. I forgive (name). Remind me, Lord, to not hold any more resentments, but rather to love this person. Father, I ask You to also forgive (name) . Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ Holy Name, Amen.
Lord God, I release ______ into your care. You know all my love and concern for (him/her). I know that You share that love and concern, so I release (him/her) into Your hands. Help me to find healthy and helpful ways to love and care and pray for (him/her), even as I learn to trust You to see all I cannot see and do what I cannot do.
Mighty God, for too long I have wanted to be in control, tried to be in control and cherished the illusion that I am in control. I release myself and my illusions into Your hands.
By Your grace, I surrender my need to feel in control, and embrace the truth that You are in control and that I can control only my inner life and not my outward circumstances—and certainly not other people.
Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot control, courage to change the few things I can (my thoughts and actions) and wisdom to know the difference.
Dear Lord, You know how I struggle with anger in my heart and how I still have hatred toward those that have hurt and abused me in so many ways. Lord, my anger is so deep within my soul that I sometimes feel my head is going to burst.
I know Lord that there is no way that I can control my own anger for I have tried and failed so many times… I can manage for a while and then I feel as if I am about to explode from within. I know I need to deal with the very root of my anger – help me Lord.
Lord I know that the only way to deal with my anger is to keep my heart and my thoughts focused on You – who took the punishment for all my sin – all my anger –all my hatred.I know that forgiveness – true genuine forgiveness toward those that have hurt me so badly is the way to deal with the root of the problem.
Help me to say as You did on the cross, Father forgive them and to keep my heart looking to You.
I confess my anger Lord and ask for Your forgiveness – and create in me a clean heart, forgiving heart, I pray. Amen
Lord, help me to let go of all bitterness and indignation and wrath (passion, rage, bad temper) and resentment (anger, animosity).
You are the One Who binds up and heals the broken-hearted. I receive Your anointing that destroys every yoke of bondage. I receive emotional healing by faith, and I thank You for giving me the grace to stand firm until the process is complete.
Thank You for wise counselors. I acknowledge the Holy Spirit as my wonderful Counselor. Thank You for helping me work out my salvation with fear and trembling, for it is You, Father, Who works in me to will and to act according to Your good purpose.
In the name of Jesus, I choose to forgive those who have wronged me. I purpose to live a life of forgiveness because You have forgiven me.
With the help of the Holy Spirit, I get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, brawling, and slander, along with every form of malice.
I desire to be kind and compassionate to others, forgiving them, just as in Christ You forgave me.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Dear God, please help me to forgive this person for hurting my feelings. Help me to see the greatness in her and to love her the way that You do.
Help me to relinquish the anger that I’m experiencing so that I can walk in the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Help me to heal from this incident and to release any bitterness that I may be harboring.
Please give me guidance in this situation, Holy Spirit, so that I can approach it in the way that is most pleasing to You. Help me God to do Your will. Thank You, and in Jesus’ mighty name, I pray. Amen.
Lord, with Your help, I release all the negative thoughts, feelings and impressions that lead to an attitude of victimhood in my life. I turn from it. I refuse to be a victim any longer.
I choose to rely and live on the truth of Your Word that says I am more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37) rather than a victim, through the One who loves me and gave Himself for me.
Let me live a victorious life from this moment on instead of entertaining any thoughts of victimhood.
I ask, Lord, that you intervene in my life to help me overcome this hatred. I know you warn against letting it fester. I know you ask us to love rather than hate. You forgive us all for our sins rather than letting us be angry.
Your son died on a cross for our sins rather than you allowing yourself to hate us. He couldn’t even hate his captors. No, you are the ultimate in forgiveness and overcoming even the potential for hate.
The only thing you hate is sin, but it is a thing, and you still offer up your grace when we fail.Check out this great video of Pastor Rick Warren as he discusses what the bible says about forgiveness and forgiving others.
About the Author of this Blog Post
Crystal Ayres has served as our editor-in-chief for the last five years. She is a proud veteran, wife and mother. The goal of ConnectUs is to publish compelling content that addresses some of the biggest issues the world faces. If you would to reach out to contact Crystal, then go here to send her a message.