Let’s talk emotions, because they are important!
Unfortunately, people have probably made you guilty for feeling them. But feelings are helpful even as they can be deadly and destructive! I wanted to take some time to encourage every young woman (and man!) who finds themselves with a pile of emotions.
1. Emotions are a necessary part of living life.
You can’t avoid them! They are here and we have to address them. Don’t stuff your emotions down deeper and deeper so they can’t be felt. If you don’t deal with your emotions, you won’t live life well. Own up to your emotions (both the good & bad) and respond to them. You cannot move forward if you don’t address the emotions in this life.
I’m not saying you should let emotions control and define you, but I am saying that emotions need to be felt, responded to, and dealt with. It won’t always be easy, but stuffing them away and cutting them out of your life will harm you and others around you.
2. Emotions help us discern.
If you’re a Christian, warning bells are probably going off in your head right now, maybe even some red flags! So, let me help you understand. The things that we feel are good indicators of what’s going on in our hearts. Is there anger? Fear? Anxiety? These are giving us windows into our hearts, and our hearts often stay locked up, quiet, and ignored! Emotions can be warning bells to tell us it’s time to deal with what’s going on inside the deepest parts of us. Take these emotions to God. Surrender the ones that need surrendered, confess the sin, and know hope & healing! And then move forward.
Perhaps, you are you feeling happiness, excitement, or wonder. These emotions remind you of God’s gifts in your life! Feel these things and thank God for them.
Emotions are excellent indicators. Listen to them without letting them control you.
3. Emotions have the potential to draw us nearer to Christ.
More red flags, anyone? Let’s talk about it. I know that in the thick of my chronic pain, heartbreak and confusion, my emotions were vehicles to and from God’s grace. Crying out to Him, asking for His strength, pouring out my weary soul and falling down in tears brought me so much closer to my God. I was not using my emotions to be angry with God. I was sharing my emotions with God in the hope and promise that He hears, listens, and loves!
Bringing my pent up, weary, wounded emotions to God taught me a lot about Who He is! He is the great Comforter. He is El Roi, the God who sees! If you’re not sure about this point, read the entire book of Psalms. You will find emotional chapter after emotional chapter of prayers and dependent cries to God. Below is one of my favorite verses in the Psalms ,and I have never regretted trusting and confiding in God!
Psalms 62:8 Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. (ESV)
Take your emotions to God. Share them. Give up what needs giving up. Receive His grace. Lean into His strength. Cry out, cry loud, and be loved by a God who comforts!
4. Emotions can strengthen the bonds of friendship.
As humans, we have all felt great pain and sadness. It is part of this world. Emotions will be felt and experienced by all! The feelings and emotions we have experienced can pull us closer together when we share our stories, burdens, and weaknesses. When we lean into God’s grace together, deep friendship is born! Since we have known and felt emotions, we can know and feel what others are experiencing.
Never be afraid to share with others the emotions of this life. Life needs to be felt, especially together! Come together, share together, and go to God together. Give up what needs giving up. Receive God’s strength and bind your hearts ever closer!
5. Emotions remind us how dependent on God we are in this life.
Life is hard! Life changes! There is so much loss, and so much grief. Even so, there is hope, healing, joy, and restoration. Emotions are scattered along every road and we don’t have to be afraid to feel.
Emotions are vessels toward God when we bring all of them before Him in dependence. Emotions show us that we are poor and needy, and desperate for God. Our hearts are composed of so many small & big emotions. In all these feelings, we can know hope, forgiveness, and healing in Him alone.
Make your emotions known to God loudly, quietly, secretly, and often. He will hold your heart, and you are safe beneath the shadow of His wings. He is always ready to be Forgiver and Comforter. God wants you to know Him. He wants you to pour out your heart before Him. Bundle up all your emotions and take them to Him in prayer.
I Peter 5:7 Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. (ESV)
God knows what it’s like to feel, and He cares for you. That’s a guarantee! Bringing every bit of your heart before God will show you again & again how safe and cherished you are, no matter what.