We kicked off a new series this week called, Mixed Emotions. The bottom line was emotions are a guess, not a guide.
I recently experienced a bunch of different emotions. Someone I dearly love told me something that really upset me. I felt hurt, angry, disappointed, and unloved.
I talked to my husband and a very close friend, and they both suggested I cool down before I discussed the issue any further with her. So, I waited a bit and tried to call her—she didn’t answer.
I prayed for wisdom on how to handle the situation.
A couple more days passed, and I decided to text her but had second thoughts. God was definitely trying to tell me something! I finally decided to put up walls, toss the ball back into her court, and stubbornly wait until she reached out to me. With emotions clouding my thinking, this plan seemed rational at the time.
A few days later, during my morning quiet time, I felt led to call a dear and wise Christian friend to discuss the situation. She took the time to point out how my emotions had gotten me off-track, how this choice to avoid my loved one could further damage our relationship. She reminded me about grace and loving people where they are at—that it wasn’t my job to change anyone. It was my job to love them, to accept them for who they are, and to pray for them. She gently reminded me that when my loved one finally reached out to me, I should be grateful. Because it would show I mattered to her.
And then I had an epiphany: I often don’t treat God how I want others to treat me. Instead, I frequently do what I want to do, without any consideration of God’s feelings about it. Sometimes I am just selfish, only caring about my wants and desires. Yet, God would never put up walls with me, like I had considered doing. I realized how much grace and love God continually shows me. He never tells me how badly I hurt him when I return to him. He just loves me where I am at, and he changes me for my good. I felt deeply humbled.
But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
God loves us so much that he sent his Son to die on the cross to save us from our sins. When we put our faith in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are rescued and no longer condemned for our sins. Instead, our relationship with God is restored, and we are loved and accepted as his children.
So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.
As we grow in our faith and truly accept God’s unconditional love and forgiveness, we learn to unconditionally love and forgive others.
1 John 4:19
We love each other because he loved us first.
How do you handle tough emotions? What are effective ways you can deal with your emotions?
Next time you have strong emotions: Take a deep breath. Pray. Seek wisdom from a wise Christian friend.
God you are so awesome. I praise you that you’re loving and full of grace. You wait patiently for us to return to you. You love us so much that you don’t want to just save us, you want to restore us. Help me to love others as you have loved me. Fill me with your grace and compassion. Change me Lord, I cannot do this on my own. Amen.
This post was written by Marsha Raymond. Marsha has been happily married to her husband, Jeff, for 30 years. They have two grown sassy and fearless daughters. She loves spending time with God, her family and friends, reading, riding bicycles, yoga and walking.
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