9 Partake – Towards Healed Emotions in the Christian Disciple
9. Partake – Towards Healed Emotions in the Christian Disciple
The psalmist wrote in Psalm 139 verse 23 to 24: “Investigate my life, O God, find out everything about me; cross-examine and test me, get a clear picture of what I’m about; see for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong— then guide me on the road to eternal life.”
As a Christian disciple, did you know that God wants all parts of you to be following Jesus! That includes your thinking, your actions and your attitudes! It means your mind; your body and will are all to be under the control of the Holy Spirit! This includes your emotions. It must be said that this is contrary to some modern thinking, which stipulates that showing emotions can be a ruinous thing! In Scripture, God reveals Himself as emotional! Our Lord Jesus Christ displayed the full gamut of emotions! But for us humans, there are two extremes with which people exhibit emotional responses. One extreme is the kind exhibited where emotions are stifled and suppressed! The other extreme is where the emotions control the person! Both extremes are erroneous and as Christian disciples we seek a balance whereby we exhibit emotions but under the influence and control of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes weattempt to excuse our bad emotional responses & attitudes and turn them into problems as well as into sins. Whilst wrong responses must be dealt with as sin, it is also very helpful to find out what has caused these bad responses and attitudes, so that we cannot sin that way again! For example, we confess our sins of anger or resentment, but it is also helpful to discover why I am an angry or resentful person.
David Seamands in his book “Healing Damaged Emotions”.‘Just as the rings of a tree reveal the developmental history of a tree, so it is with us. Just a few minutes beneath the protective bark, the concealing, protective mask, are the recorded rings of our lives, – scars of painful hurts and damaged emotions.
Firstly let us discuss briefly what may well be some of the evidence of damaged emotions within us:
1. Deep sense of unworthiness: a continuous, nagging feeling of anxiety, inadequacy, & inferiority. Such a person feels they are no good & will never amount to anything.
2. Perfectionist complex (The IORTA person): This person is always striving, struggling to succeed, feeling guilty and a failure. They are trying to please themselves, others, & God by trying harder, usually to keep a set of rules. They are bound by a tyrannical twins of “oughts” and “onlys” – I ought to do better; If only……
3. Hypersensitivity: This person has usually been hurt deeply, having reached out for love & affection and been rejected. Often these people cover up their feelings by being hard or tough & often hurt & dominate others.
4. Fear: These people are so afraid of failure that they never get involved in anything risky, where they may make a mistake or look weak. They are often defeated, indecisive people.
Now having seen what may be the evidence of damaged emotions, what principles can the Christian Disciple follow to help them come under the full control of the Spirit?
1. Face your problem squarely acknowledge it to yourself, and to someone else.
2. Accept your responsibility in the matter. Now you may have been the victim, but what about your response, and especially the continued response.
3. Do you really want to be healed? Sometimes there is a sense of satisfaction in being the ‘problem person’, the centre of attention, and the underdog.
4. Forgive everyone involved in your problem. Some people won’t forgive because then there would be nobody left to blame, except himself or herself.
5. Forgive yourself: you can & must, if you have received God’s forgiveness. God is not surprised or shocked by our sin; He knows what we are capable of. (Jeremiah 17:10)
6. Finally, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal your real problem. Acknowledge that when Jesus died on the cross, it was not only for your sins that He died, but also for your entire sinful nature!
For more to think about please do read 2 Corinthians chapter 2 verses 5 to 11.What emotions do you still need to place under the control of the Holy Spirit? Are you holding onto something from the past, which is in turn holding you back from coming under the full control of the Holy Spirit? Where can you demonstrate a balanced Christian response to an event and thereby demonstrate the Gospel to somebody who is not a Christian? If you have any comments to make on this, please do contact me at http://www.davegroberts.podbean.com. I would love to hear from you and if these are making any difference at all to your continual Christian discipleship! Thank you.