In discussing the movie “Inside Out” with my 9-year-old daughter, she concluded that sometimes Anger has bad ideas, and wondered if he was the villain of the movie. She concluded that sometimes we need anger to accomplish things that require courage. Anger is a part of us. If anger decides everything, though, we will not find true joy.

Revenge is prevalent, fueling the battles between tribes, sects, races, religions…my 9, 12 and 14-year-olds! Joseph as the governor in charge of rations wants to exact revenge on his brothers who heartlessly sold him into slavery. Anger is our human response to hurt, and we often avenge hurt by hurting back. But it is not healed. That takes forgiveness.

Ultimately, Joseph reconciles with his brothers and is merciful. How can you use anger in your life to impel action for justice, but avoid being snagged by the injustice of revenge?

—Jackie Beale-DelVecchio is a middle school religion teacher at the Sacred Heart Schools, Chicago, IL.