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14th April 2013
Our emotions are the product of our thoughts and an internal barometer of our spiritual health. They are a gauge that tells us what is happening within.
Emotions are God-given – we feel them because God built them into the fabric of our being. The Bible talks about and shows us examples of all kinds of emotions – joy, despair, love, anger, delight, helplessness, compassion, anxiety – and we see Jesus expressing emotions, such as when he wept at the death of Lazarus (John 11:35).
God created us to feel emotions, but how we handle them is vitally important. Some people try to cover them up, ignoring them, keeping a 'stiff upper lip' either because we don't want to be vulnerable in front of others or things are too painful to deal with. Other people rely on their emotions, trusting that how they feel is a certain indicator of what is true; using their feelings as a point of reference for how they see situations, experiences and life in general. And others explode with their emotions, pouring them out all over the place, damaging those around them and themselves.
We are meant to rule our emotions, not be ruled by them. We have a choice about how we respond to each situation we face, no matter how difficult it is. Jesus felt the same emotions we do, but he handled them perfectly – just look at how he responded to being beaten, accused and executed!
It's important to recognise our emotions and to take them to God. He knows how we feel – He sees the depths of our hearts! When we stop and give space to talk through our emotions with God, we can usually get to the bottom of why we feel the way we do and what is driving our emotions.
The key to changing how we feel is seeing each situation in the light of God's Word. Honesty before God – and with trusted friends with mature faith – enables us to be empowered by the Spirit to see where we are believing lies. Through the Spirit, we then to align ourselves with what is actually true, rather than simply how we feel. When we look at circumstances and events from our little level, things can seem overwhelming and bleak, but when we look up and seek God, our perspective changes!
To download the 'life application' questions and sermon, click here.
Posted by Santino Hamberis