Emotions are one of the greatest challenges we face in life, and they often reveal the motives of our hearts. When we choose to reveal our emotions to God, we gain the clarity to change and the courage to be honest with others. This begins with exercising faith in God to be vulnerable rather than choosing to live in denial.
Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! 2Yes, what joy for those whose record the LORD has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!
Psalm 32:1-2 (NLT)
“Run up and down every street in Jerusalem,” says the Lord. “Look high and low; search throughout the city! If you can find even one just and honest person, I will not destroy the city.
Jeremiah 5:1 (NLT)
Awareness: What’s Behind The Emotion?
Laughter can conceal a heavy heart, but when laughter ends, the grief remains.
Proverbs 14:13 (NLT)
God met me more than halfway, he freed me from my anxious fears. Look at him; give him your warmest smile. Never hide your feelings from him. When I was desperate, I called out, and God got me out of a tight spot.
Psalm 34:4-5 (MSG)
The fear of revealing our emotions begins with denying we have or feel weakness. Most of us choose to live a life of denial and deceit because we are afraid of rejection, afraid of being hurt, and afraid of being known. All these fears are focused on people, not on God. Choosing to have faith means turning to God, trusting God, and allowing our emotions to drive us to pursue God rather than avoiding him.
Conviction: Turning Emotion Into Action
We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity.
2 Corinthians 10:4-6 (MSG)
And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.
Luke 8:15 (NLT)
We exercise faith by being vulnerable and honest about our emotions with God and submitting them to the Scriptures. This begins with honest prayer – praying through all our guilt, fears, anger and other emotions until we reach a decision to take obedient action. Feelings don’t change hearts or lives, but faithful action and obedience to the Bible will always transform hearts and lives. (James 2:14-17; Hebrews 4:12-13).
Here are some questions to provoke more thought and personal application:
- What 3 emotions do you feel most often in any given week? (Use an emotions chart to identify them)
- What emotions do you avoid having to feel most in relationships? Why?
- What emotions do you express most to God? What emotions do you express least to God?
- What emotions would your spouse or roommates say that you exhibit or carry most? Why?
- What emotion dominates your marriage/home/household? How could these emotions help you develop depth in your relationship with God, and become a catalyst for change – for exercising your faith?
Develop vulnerability and depth in prayer, by writing down the top 3 emotions you felt towards God and towards your closest relationships from the day before. Then pray through each to understand the truths, sins or motives at the root of these, and the change God is calling you to make in response to facing these.
Psalms & Proverbs: Study out the words Honest & Heart in these books of the Bible