life and faith

Emotional: why our emotional state doesn’t have to dictate our fate

Emotional doesn’t begin to describe how I’ve felt over the last few months. It’s been a roller-coaster ride, with frequent dipping low to ground.

During my dark season of the soul, I struggled to write, feel creative or be encouraged. Ironically, it also coincided with self-publishing my book.

Talk about bad timing. 🙁 It was accompanied by guilt for feeling this way as a blood-bought, born-again daughter of God.

As an encourager, I felt adrift, and anxious about how to help others when I was so discouraged myself.

When I listened too intently to my emotions, life felt pretty grim, devoid of joy and peace. I struggled to find myself in the maelstrom, never mind see where God was in all of this.

Am I suggesting we shouldn’t be in tune with our mental state? Not at all. It’s how we experience the rich variety of feelings at our disposal, and a means of discerning deep desires that aid us in shaping purpose and plans.

But we’re not meant to live in a constant state of emotional lability and overwhelm, nor to be numb to all that’s going on around and inside us.

Balance is the key thing. Knowing what is ‘normal’ for us is useful, too, in discerning the way ahead. Excessive grief, despair and discouragement could be warning signs of incipient depression, requiring medical care and attention.

Positive emotions are different. We feel energised. Hope flares brighter. Love flows more smoothly and joy is a natural way of being.

I think that joy and sorrow can coexist as partners in the way they interweave and interact together, pulling us toward God, whether in praise or seeking comfort.

“Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven…look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy” ~ Kahlil Gibran

I’ve been learning that our wounds – pain, grief, sorrow – are also our deepest source of spiritual growth, if we let them teach us the lessons they bring.

emotional wounds WOJ and ACW

NOTE –  I hesitated to share this word because it was birthed during a particularly painful season of the soul that I am only just beginning to come out of. However, authenticity has been the hallmark of my work as a writer, so here it is. My hope and prayer is that you will see the seeds of hope and encouragement hidden within, because our emotional state has much to teach us as we yield to the lessons it brings.

The very things we want to run away from could be a means of grace, drawing us closer to Christ Click To Tweet

**To read the rest of this post, please click here and come and join me at the Association of Christian Writers (ACW), ‘More than Writers’ blog where I am sharing my words today.** Thank you

16 Comments

  1. BettieG 18th May 2016
    • Joy Lenton 18th May 2016
  2. Carly 18th May 2016
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  3. Joyce Barrass 18th May 2016
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  7. Gayl 19th May 2016
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  8. inspiredbyjune 20th May 2016
    • Joy Lenton 20th May 2016

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