The “boiling point”

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With 4:22 left in the last quarter, the whistle was blown to call out Warriors star player Stephen Curry’s foul — his sixth and last.

The crowd of almost 20,000 jeered as Curry, in frustration, has thrown his mouthpiece near the scorer’s table, hitting a Cleveland fan inadvertently.

The ref pointed his fingers to the locker room, and the next thing we all saw was apart from the said mouthpiece, two other things were thrown-out: Steph himself, out of the court and a first in his career, and the already-slim chances of the Warriors bouncing back and sealing the championship in Game 6.

Frustrated because of the several “unfair” fouls that were called against him, Curry, whom the fans are fond of seeing bearing the never-say-die spirit in every game, finally reached his boiling point.

Curry is one of the most thrilling basketball stars of today. He is outspoken about his Christian faith, and is being looked up to by young people because of his excellence in his chosen sport. And on Friday night, just like every other Christian in the world, he has shown that he is not perfect.

Let’s cut the guy some slack. The Warriors has been soaring since the season began, and this Game 6 might have been the lowest point for them. As their dream season comes down to one final game this Sunday night (Monday morning here in the Philippines), the fear of being the first team to lose after a 3-1 NBA Finals lead is probably looming at the back of their minds.

I’m pretty much sure everyone can relate to Curry’s meltdown. Each of us has his own “boiling point,” and pretty much majority of us don’t know how to handle it. Just like this man, we aren’t perfect.

Anger is an emotion and it actually happens to everyone. And while it is true that anger is part of being a human, feeling it is different from sinning because of it.

26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,
Ephesians 4:26 ESV

My take on this verse is that it does not fully say to “avoid anger” (or suppress it) but we should learn how to deal with it properly, in a timely manner. It’s not that Jesus did not get angry himself, because he did. (See Mark 3:4-6, Mark 11:15, John 2:15-17) But when He did get angry, He allowed the Holy Spirit to lead Him to overcome the anger with love, peace and patience.

It is difficult to stop and pray in the heat of the moment, more difficult still to love and be patient rather than voice out what ticked you off and take revenge, but it is not impossible.

And if ever you already reached your limit and lost your cool, remember that it is never too late to run to God, repent, and ask how to fix the mess you have made because of the anger or frustration that you have felt.

During the very frustrating and heated moment in the game, Steph has made a public mistake and paid for it. To his credit though, he did approach the fan he accidentally hit, apologized and shook hands with him. He was thrown out of court, and the day after, paid $25,000 fine because of the mistake he just did.

Stephen Curry, as famous as he are, isn’t perfect. Just like us. And the baskets he make or the fouls that were called against him does not make him more or any less of a Christian. The good side of it is that it we realize that we are not defined by how many mistakes we made, because our worth, purpose, security and identity comes from none other than God Himself.

Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and he relents over disaster.
Joel 2:13 ESV

Photo above from: Getty Images
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