Thursday, October 30, 2014

Help! I'm just too emotional...
Sometimes, emotions are the very things that shatter our world. I find it easy advising people about not being driven away by their emotions and to still cling unto God and decide/do things that are God-glorifying. However, when I'm also into the deepest pit of struggle with my emotions, I find my advice so idealistic. So I'm penning this short post to let readers know that you are not alone in this struggle and for me to have something to read again to remind myself of God's faithfulness in my life.

Below are some helpful ways to overcome negative emotions:

Listen to songs that exalt GOD.

I do not merely say that you listen to songs. There are sentimental songs that worsen the situation; that instead of encouraging you, they even pamper the negative emotions. So I made sure that I listen to songs that are GOD-centered in order for me to see that GOD is far greater powerful than whatever struggles I have. In that way also, the blurring vision of who GOD is in my life becomes clearer. I am reminded that whatever action/s I am about to do will reflect my testimony of who GOD is in my life. I used to believe the lie that when a woman is in pain, her actions are justifiable. Believe me, consequences of actions initiated by being too emotional are far more painful than what you have been through. There will be regrets and lots of "I wish...".

Fill your head and heart with the Words of GOD.

*Listen to audio sermons

Instead of staring at the ceiling or pounding your pillows, try to listen to audio sermons that will again magnify the greatness of GOD. There are times that breaking us more will make us whole again. And when I listen, I really choose preachers who will not tell me what I want to hear, I choose those who will tell me what I really need to hear.

*Read the Bible.

If there are no available e-sermons, reading the Bible is very helpful too. I love reading Psalms during my "downs". I love meeting David that in times of his depression and while he is in his deepest pit, he is still able to tell himself to put his hope in God for he will still praise Him (Psalm 42:5-6, 11; 43:5).

Talk and pray with a friend.

Ecclesiastes 4:10 says, "If one falls down, his friend can help him up." The book of Proverbs even defines friend as someone who loves at all times and who sticks closer than a brother (Prov. 17:17; 18:24). Go to a friend who loves Christ more that you - that is the friend you need. He/She is the one who may wound/break you more but can be trusted (Prov.27:6). Go to a friend who has greater passion for God's glory because he/she will be more concern of magnifying Christ in you than empowering your ego. He/She will help you to look on God and not on yourself; he/she will help you let go and let God.

Be still and know God. (Psalm 46:10)

Have you tried doing the third tip and still find yourself in a maze? There are times that the struggle is beyond words that you couldn't explain to a friend what you are going through. There are times that even you, yourself, couldn't understand the negative feelings that envelope you. There are times that you can even utter that you don't know yourself anymore.

That is possible to happen but not impossible to overcome. God knows us more that we know ourselves; God understands. He is still the Bestfriend we can have. If times come that I think I'm alone, I always remind myself I am not. What a great relationship and privilege we have if we entrust God our everything! We can cry and utter words beyond comprehension and we are assured that He listens, that He understands. It is comforting that even what we can just say is "Abba, Father", God in His Sovereignty will make all things beautiful in His time.

I guess this is the secret of King David as he is known as the "man after God's heart". He knows His God so much that even when he doesn't understand what he is undergoing, He just needs to immerse Himself in the presence of God and so he can confidently say "I will still praise the Lord." Just be still and know God. Calm that heart and know God. If you still think that your heart is more powerful than your will to calm it, don't listen to it still. John comforts us in his letter that our God is greater than our hearts, and He knows everything. (I John 3:20) If Jesus can calm the storm and the raging sea, how much more can He tame a wild heart? How much more can He soothe a hurt heart? How much more can He mend a broken heart? How much more can He lift a depressed/discouraged heart?

I want to quote John Piper before I end this:
“My feelings are not God. God is God. My feelings do not define truth. God’s word defines truth. My feelings are echoes and responses to what my mind perceives. And sometimes - many times - my feelings are out of sync with the truth. When that happens - and it happens every day in some measure - I try not to bend the truth to justify my imperfect feelings, but rather, I plead with God: Purify my perceptions of your truth and transform my feelings so that they are in sync with the truth.”  

Let us pray that when negative feelings are there, our minds and eyes will still be focused on God. Great is God's faithfulness. I have proven that over and over again.

When I am into a situation I think I can't bear, I just sing:
Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

My feelings are changing; they are not constant. My GOD is eternal and great. 

I just want ro share a very encouraging song by Joni Eareckson Tada:
Copyright His Beloved 2011.