Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast Episode 038 Who Masters My Emotions
Welcome to the Terri Hitt – Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast
Episode #038 – Who Masters My Emotions?
Thank you for entrusting and investing your precious time with me to grow in Jesus together. I am blessed to be back with you today to discuss more ways to live with eternal perspective.
This has been one very busy week! I am in the midst of writing resources for the new Live With Eternal Perspective website that is about to launch! I look forward to listeners seeing many free resources to help you grow your walk with Jesus intentionally. I’m truly excited and feel very blessed at how God obviously put everything together for this to happen. As I am definitely in a season of busyness, I usually work early morning and at night, leaving time through the bulk of the day for our homeschool lessons. But the one activity I have to do before we go to school each day is play with my youngest. I think it is her favorite time of day.
Last week we were playing with her favorite toys, the Lego Ninjago Ninjas and their ship Destiny’s Bounty. The whole week of playtime had revolved around the storyline of the Ninjas going on vacation together. But, of course, what do you think happened? While they were on vacation, trouble found them and the gang was smack in the middle of a disastrous plot line full of adventure!
On this particular day, Brooklyn had planned for a dinosaur to attach an invisible chain around the top of the Destiny’s Bounty sails and begin slowly and sneakily pulling the ship full of Ninjas farther out to sea. After attaching tiny Lego chains around the ship mast, she gently pulled and moved her dinosaur so that the ship would begin to turn. Except each time she did it, the chains burst off the ship one time after another. As I watched, I wondered how many times she would reattach and try again. I lost count. Each time, she adjusted her technique slightly, but in turn, received the same result.
Most people would have been upset by that point, or at least given up. Not her. I was intrigued. I know at that age, I probably would have expressed some frustration and changed my storyline to do something else. Each it happened to her, she responded with joyful enthusiasm. I finally asked her how she stayed so encouraged without growing frustrated. She was genuinely surprised and asked, “Why would I be frustrated?”
We began to laugh and I left her to continue with her plans. She finally found a method that worked for the storyline she created and joy was the only emotion she ever exhibited.
Every disappointing result gives us an opportunity to choose what will master our emotions.
My precious girl remarked that Jesus wouldn’t want her to get frustrated. It honestly seemed like such a foreign reaction to her. I was impressed that she had such control over her emotions. Most adults cannot master their moods. It was because her heart was directed upwards at how she felt Jesus would have her react. Out of anyone I know, my protective heart felt that she is the one who deserved to be able to get agitated. Most of her life has been very hard, filled with neglect, disappointment, and sorrow. But as I sat and watched her reactions that day, I realized that I don’t remember ever seeing her become defeated or angry.
My mama heart was buoyed by her godly example of release to our Heavenly Father. Just because we think we deserve to receive – or someone offers us a “pass” to express frustration or negativity, it doesn’t mean that it is God’s best for us. Obviously, we are human, we feel emotions and need to be able to express them. God gave us feelings. Yet this world teaches and models for us to think of ourselves first, without thought of how our moods or rants affect others or portray Christ within us.
God provided a way for us to look Up and He sent us Jesus as the perfect model who showed us how to handle emotions and feelings.
Our merciful Heavenly Father wants us to admit and address our feelings and also what is driving it. Often, it is actually something else, often unaddressed, that causes us to explode or act in ways that magnify what we are experiencing. God gave us emotions. He expects us to use them wisely.
Five basic steps to help us do that are to:
1. Reflect. Think about what we are feeling and why the emotion is so strong.
2. Stay calm. Do not react in ways that cause distress or danger to others.
3. Pray. Seek God, who understands our emotions and gives us the avenues to handle them properly. Ask Him to forgive and guide us.
4. Allow God to work inside us for transformation of thoughts and actions.
5. Get help. Sometimes we need to find a trusted family member, friend, pastor, or Christian counselor to help us get to the root of what we are experiencing and help us deal with and get through it.
Isaiah 41:10 says, “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
What makes some of us unable to withstand extreme hardship and simply crumble, versus others who rise up with even more joy?
The Bible gives us many verses that show us the attitude and temperament God desires for us to carry. Although we can read study, memorize or write the words, real change won’t occur until we allow Jesus to penetrate our hearts and minds. When we follow Him, we aren’t miraculously changed into a carbon copy of Him. But day by day, actually moment by moment, we allow Him to transform us to become more and more like Him. Gradually, intentionally.
1 Peter 5:6-7 says, “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”
God cares about even the smallest details of our lives. He pays attention to and knows all we think and do, and desires us to seek Him and please Him. He wants us to rely on Him so that we can experience fullness of joy. Just like my girl did, despite the circumstances around her.
1 Peter 5:8-10 says, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.”
Satan would love nothing more than for us to experience hardship, failure, or disappointment and become angry at God. He would like us to make a scene and steal our power in being a Christian or make our lifestyle look less powerful to others around us in an attempt to make God appear weak and out of control. He wants us to strain our relationships with others and shatter our walk and dependency on God.
James 1:19-20 offers beautiful wisdom. “So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
Or listen to what Proverbs 29:11 says, “A fool vents all his feelings, But a wise man holds them back.”
Such wise advice doesn’t only apply to anger or frustration. It’s also perfect for social media. Many opinions and thoughts are better left unsaid. Modern technology allows fools to vent and attack others with the touch of a few buttons and in record time. Words, once unleashed hold wicked pain and power over the speaker and the receiver. Many relationships have been ruined by not heeding the advice of these scriptures. Also, words spoken in frustration or anger to many as children still carry deep pain and hurt in their adult years that only God can fully heal. Just as actions we viewed as children can negatively influence our responses and emotions for many years.
Remember the words of Psalm 34:18, which says, “The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.”
The Lord sees and hears all our hurts. He knows the many afflictions we face and will deliver us out of them all. If we trust in Him.
Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
As we face trials and heartaches each day, let us lift our faces to the only One who understands. Seek God in all matters. He cares. He does not want us to carry burdens alone. In fact, listen to what Matthew 11:28-30 says, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
This passage of verses is relevant and timeless. Jesus offers such a merciful, compassionate command to us in His invitation to come to Him. No matter what is ailing us, no matter what is oppressing us, no matter what heavy burden afflicts us, Jesus invites us to lay it down and allow Him to shoulder it.
When a believer takes the yoke of Jesus, as He offers, we are placing ourselves under his dominion. Are you ready for relief from daily stresses? The only way to find whole and true peace and live without frustration is to accept Jesus’s offer and accept His yoke. It is the true method God has given us to live stress-free. The first step is release. Strive to live with the faith of a child and let your burdens be lifted from your shoulders by Jesus.
Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You.”
How like God to remind me of how powerfully He is working in our family through routine playtime. A little girl who never heard of Him five years ago beautifully shows the patience and joy that many of us take years to learn. I see the work He is doing in her special life. With her never having the opportunity to just be what we consider a normal child before she came to us, playing together has been a perfect way to bond and attach with each other and allow us both to mature our walk with Jesus and experience spiritual lessons at the same time.
Remember, every disappointment gives us an opportunity to choose what will master our emotions. When we choose to release thoughts and emotions to God, despite trials and hardships, we will be brought to our knees, but drawn closer to God. It is only then that we build responses that model our Savior’s heart.
Father God, I humbly ask You to help me address the areas of my life that are not pleasing to You. Help me to recognize where I need to allow You to craft better thoughts, emotions, feelings, and guide me in the ways I handle them. Let me use the times I mess up and react in ways unpleasing to You as a catalyst for lasting and eternal change. Help me to resist handling mistakes on my own and humbly bow to You and Your wise ways. Shape me to be more like Jesus each moment. In His precious name I pray.
Did you enjoy this episode? Would you like others to hear weekly encouragement and learn how to live with more eternal perspective? Can you think of a friend or family member who might enjoy encouragement? If so, please share this podcast with them and take time to leave a quick rating and review wherever you listen to this podcast. Until next week, keep looking Up and finding new ways to Live With Eternal Perspective.