Hey y’all! How is everybody? Hopefully y’all are staying warm and dry, and things are good. Hopefully everybody is healthy and happy. Hopefully 2016 has begun with you searching for your socks – because God has already blessed them right off of you! 😉 I’m on a writing binge today. I’ve cranked out two posts already, and this is number three. But God is doing some amazing things in my life, and I wanted to share them with you! So, if you’re new here, find a cuppa something you like and a comfy spot to relax a minute. Even if you’re not new here, you know the drill.
It’s been an emotional couple of weeks. I’m moving away from the county and town where I’ve spent my entire life to say ‘yes’ to an adventure with Jesus. At age 55, I’m moving away to college. I feel like I’m 18 again; a little unsure of myself, a little scared. But I’m also completely confident that this is God’s plan for me!
I’ve been going through a lot of different emotions. Joy, excitement, happiness, sadness, fear, anger, panic. The cool thing is that they are just emotions. We all have them; God made us that way. They are how we can keep some mental balance when things are more than we can handle in our humanity. They help us release the burst of energy that we wouldn’t have a way to discharge otherwise, and help us to re-focus on what’s really important.
The emotions on this journey had been 99% positive for nearly two years. Joy, gratitude, happiness, excitement, love, peace. The past couple of weeks, the ‘negative’ emotions have surfaced. I’ve been sad, scared, angry, hurt, feeling loss and sometimes a bit of panic. So what do we do with these things, anyway? How can we experience them and still be walking in faith?
First, emotions are human, as I said. We all have them, God gave them to us. Emotions will come, emotions will go. Experiencing a ‘negative’ emotion doesn’t mean we don’t have faith. Look at David in the Psalms if you need any proof, or look at Jesus, or even Mary and Martha when Lazarus died. They all experienced those emotions, yet God calls David a ‘man after His own heart’ in two places in the Bible!
Saying goodbye, even for a ‘temporary’ amount of time, has been emotional and sometimes painful. I have a sense of loss. Leaving the only city I’ve ever lived in has been a cause of some sorrow. Moving to an area I’ve barely even visited to go back to school in the middle of my life is scary. Finding out the house isn’t ready and Beth can’t come was a huge disappointment. That was the last straw, so to speak, and I finally sat down and had a good cry.
You know what? I wasn’t alone in that cry. Jesus was right there. Momma Mary was right there. All the people who know me and love me were right there in spirit with their love and care for me. So, as I cried out my disappointment, I was honest with Jesus and told Him I was disappointed. I asked Him to heal the hurt, and refused to blame Him – I worshiped even as I cried. I reaffirmed my love for Him, my trust in Him, my belief that He has it all under control, my ‘yes’ to His plans for me. It took about an hour.
Emotions come and go without our permission. We have to live with them, but we don’t have to act out of them! We can choose how we will act, no matter how we feel. The other thing we can do is choose to focus on God and what He’s revealed about Himself in the Scriptures. We know He’s love, faithful, gentle, and in control of everything that concerns us. Scripture says He collects all of our tears in a bottle! He has not left us here alone to suffer.
If you’re experiencing some of the ‘negative’ emotions, call a friend. Let them cry with you. Just be sure you don’t wallow in the misery of the emotion. Instead, turn your focus to God’s love and care for you. Think about His faithfulness toward you, about your history with His mercy and care.
If you don’t have that history, or need help processing what’s going on in your life, find a pastor or a priest. They can help you process things, and help you focus on what God is doing in your life through this situation or simply remind your or lead you to His faithful love for you, no matter what. I can’t promise it will be easy, and I can’t promise it will be quick. I can promise that God loves you absolutely, and unconditionally, no matter where you’ve been or what you’ve done, or what’s happened in your life. He’s waiting to give you new emotions of happiness, with the foundation of true joy and real peace!