Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Do your emotions rule you or does God?

Emotions are a difficult thing. Before I started to grow in the Lord they ruled my life. Not only my emotions, but the emotions of those around me dictated my day. When certain people were happy I was happy. When they were miserable I was miserable. And if I was having a bad day on top of their bad day it was like I couldn't see the sun. It was a rather depressing existence. I was at the beck and call of a spirit that didn't have anything stable to hold onto. I didn't stand on God's word and understand that even in the difficult times I can have joy and peace. I was tossed and thrown and thrashed around by each of the coming waves; at times it seemed as though I'd be torn apart and drowned in the waves of emotions that surrounded me.

The Lord calls us to peace, He says that those who abide in Him will have peace. The Bible teaches us to take each thought captive, and if it doesn't line up with the Word of the Lord we are to cast it from us. We are to transform our minds through the Spirit and the Word of our mighty God.

It has taken a while for me to really begin to grasp the concept that my emotions are not to dictate my behavior (internal or external), rather I am to allow the Spirit to lead me so that I might glorify God in all things. I still struggle with it, it is so easy for me to let my emotions get the better of me and I follow them rather than God's truth.

I very recently stumbled with this. Someone I have known for years gave me a dirty look without cause and I allowed myself to dwell in the pain. It festered in me and a spirit of resentment took hold for a few moments. I became arrogant and prideful in my pain. I believe Satan truly enjoys those moments, because I let the focus fall from God to the pain. I stopped seeking God for a moment and sin ran rampant in my heart.

Praise God, though, He got hold of me. He showed me how awful I was behaving, and how I wasn't bringing glory to Him rather I was glorying in my little pity party. In that moment I saw, once again, how absolutely necessary it is to take each thought captive. I realize that even if I have just been hurt I need to take a moment immediately and get my heart and mind in line with God or I risk acting contrary to my testimony. And that is the last thing I want to do.

I want to bring glory to my dear Father in all that I do. It matters not if I am alone. I know what I am doing, as does Christ.

So, in that moment of realization. I chose to follow God's leading. I asked for His forgiveness, and then proceeded to pray for the person, I asked God to bless and protect them. And at first my flesh screamed, it didn't want to bless that person, so I prayed harder and asked God to change my heart and my mind. And by time I finished praying I was no longer hurt or upset with the person, and my heart was clean again. Because I am no better than this person. If I wasn't seeking God's will for my life, if I chose to live in the flesh I'd be at least as hurtful as this person. And I see that. I see that it is solely by the very grace of God that I am able to act in direct opposition to my natural desire.

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