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Handling Our Emotions

How did Jesus learn to pray? If you are anything like me, you never gave that much thought. After all, He was and is the Son of God. Yet, He was raised in a Jewish home with Jewish customs. During His upbringing, He would have learned to pray the Psalms. Christopher Ash states “The Psalms give a window into how Jesus learned to pray, in his fully human life; and they are how the people of Jesus are to pray as the Spirit of Jesus leads us in praying and praising by the Psalms.” In other words, our prayers matter, and our prayers can impact the person we are inside and how we handle emotions.

One of the many things I love about the Psalms is how they teach us to handle emotions rightly. Reading through them, we find feelings such as:

· Grief

· Sorrow

· Anger

· joy

· etc.

No emotion is left out, and nothing is shamed. We are taught in a way that always brings our focus back to God. Ultimately, when we handle emotions God's way, they become nutrients that feed our walk with God rather than poisoning us.

Bringing Emotions Under the Lordship of Jesus Christ

How many of us have spent our lives either learning to control our emotions, stuffing our emotions down or declaring emotions as evil. Anger has especially been demonized within many religious circles, and some even will state that anger is not from God. We have been told that we cannot trust our emotions.

And yet, God made us as human beings that feel and that have emotions. And we need to understand that our belief system impacts them. Therefore, our emotions must be under the Lordship of Jesus Christ and not rogue feelings running rampant in our lives.

When we open to the very first Psalm, the direction is set. "What delight comes to the one who follows God's ways.” When we follow God’s plan, we can be assured that our emotions will become increasingly aligned with how God created us to be, feel, think, and function.

Setting a Guard

As I write this, it is election day in the United States. We have been on edge for months. We have watched division impacting not only our nation but also our churches, friendships, and families. The value of human life continues to deteriorate, and respect often seems to be a thing of the past.

David, as he penned Psalm 141, sent up a prayer to God as he said, "Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips ." David was very aware that what came out of his mouth could harm others.

· What has been coming out of my mouth?

· Does that which we speak glorify God and His creation, or does it tear down and destroy those around us?

If we want our nation, friends, and family to be unified, it is time to ask the Holy Spirit to put a guard over our mouths. The world is hungry for people who speak from the Throne Room of Heaven with emotions submitted to God. Anything less will leave us in chaos rather than in peace.

Who are you Marching with?

Going back to Psalm 1, we read, "What delight comes to the one who follows God's ways! He won't walk in step with the wicked, nor share the sinner’s way, nor be found sitting in the scorner’s seat.”

There has been a trap successfully set for the body of Christ to march in step with the world rather than in step with the Kingdom of God. The truth is that as sons and daughters of the most-high God, we are called to march to the beat of a drummer that is not of this world. We are to see differently and express emotions rightly. It is from this stance that we experience true delight. Delight or happiness is an emotion which we were created to be contagious.

· Is your position with the world system and values flexible, or are you firmly rooted, established, and unmovable in the things of God?

Going one step further, the concept of sitting in the ancient world was taking a posture of legal deliberation. When we are seated in the scorner's seat, it is a place where we join with the world system and ultimately begin to mock those who are walking with God and following His statutes.

We must understand that when we walk with God, we risk being…

· Misunderstood

· Blamed

· Ridiculed

· Mocked

· Called names

· Etc.

There is a cost of marching with Christ. But there is also a reward, and that reward is delight or joy. Joy is an emotion!

FOCUS like you mean it

“His pleasure and passion is remaining true to the Word of ‘I AM,’ meditating day and night in the true revelation.”

· Where is my focus?

We are reminded that pleasure and passion come from remaining focused or fixed on the Word and nature of God. What we focus on will have a direct impact on our emotional health.

The concept of meditation has been stolen by those in the New Age movement and other false religions. The standard teaching is that during meditation, we empty ourselves of all thought. We are told that through this practice that we become peaceful. However, that is in opposition to Scripture. In Hebrew thought, meditation is not necessarily quiet but can also convey the idea of being vocal and speaking out or declaring what you are meditating on.

Philippians 4:8 tells us exactly what to fill our minds with:

“Finally, believers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable and worthy of respect, whatever is right and confirmed by God’s word, whatever is pure and wholesome, whatever is lovely and brings peace, whatever is admirable and of good repute; if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think continually on these things .”

We are never told to empty our minds in any manner. However, we are explicitly told what we are to fill our minds with. When we fill our minds with the things of God, it becomes fuel for good, Godly, and healthy emotions. Also, it enables us to become a catalyst that can bring peace to a hurting world for the Kingdom of Heaven. Some of us need to change our diet, so our minds are consuming the right things.

· What am I filling my mind with?

God is Intentional!

Finally, verse 3 reads, "He will be standing firm like a flourishing tree planted by God's design, deeply rooted by the brook of bliss, bearing fruit in every season of his life. He is never dry, never fainting, ever blessed, ever prosperous."

Do you know that you are planted by God's design? That you are capable of bearing fruit in season and out of season. From God's standpoint, this fruit is always to be good because of where He has planted you!

Because of this, you need to know that when emotions are submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, we are not consumed by anger, worry, fear, or frustration. Instead, we are standing on the joy of our salvation and relationship with Him.

In Nehemiah 8, the people were grieved as they learned how far they had strayed. However, they are told to have a feast and to be joyful. Why? Because there is strength in the joy of the Lord. What happens to us emotionally when we feast on the joy of the Lord. Have you ever tried to have a temper tantrum when you are full of joy? Real joy only comes from a relationship with Jesus.

I also noted that we are planted by the "brook of bliss" the New Living Translation states that we are planted by Living Water. In Ezekiel 47, we learn about the river that flows from the temple, and in Revelation 22, we have the river that flows from the Throne Room of heaven. In John 4, when Jesus meets the Samaritan woman at the well, he tells her about living water.

When our root system is tapped into the world, we will have dysfunction, unrest, disunity, and uncontrolled emotions. However, when our root system is tapped into steams of living water, we not only have healthy emotions, but we also have life abundant.

· What source am I tapped into?


Heavenly Father, I make a choice today to submit my emotions to you. I ask you to teach me how to bring them under your Lordship. I desire to have healthy, Godly emotions so that I can impact the world for your Kingdom and let them know there is a hope and a future.

Heavenly Father, I delight in you as I follow your ways. As I lean into you and drink from your living water, I decree and declare that I will not walk in step with sinners, but I will walk in step with you. I decree and declare that my passion and pleasure is in remaining true to You and your Word. It is in this position where I find life and life abundant. Therefore, I decree and declare that I will fill my mind with good and Godly things and push out any thought that does not align with you or your Word. I decree and declare that you have made me to bear fruit in season and out of season.

Ash, C., 2020. Psalms For You. Place of publication not identified: The GoodBook Company.

The Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017 by BroadStreet Publishing® Group, LLC. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Psalm 1:1

Amplified Bible (AMP) Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved. Psalm 141:3

The Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017 by BroadStreet Publishing® Group, LLC. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Psalm 1:1

The Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017 by BroadStreet Publishing® Group, LLC. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Psalm 1:2

Amplified Bible (AMP) Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved. Philippians 4:8

The Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017 by BroadStreet Publishing® Group, LLC. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Psalm 1:3

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