How To Manage Our Emotions
By Angie Lewis
Did you know that our emotions could literally trap us in our
own little world? Emotions can be addictive. Some of us have
allowed bitterness, anger and resentment to take hold of our
hearts and minds and the longer we harbor these negative
emotions the more of a hardened heart we get. This is a
dangerous way to live because eventually these emotions and
thoughts make us physically sick. This is not how we should
manage our emotions.
An angry person chooses to be angry and let’s his or her anger out on themselves or other people. But we can do something for ourselves to relieve that anger in a good way. There is nothing wrong with being angry – we all get angry from time to time, but it is how we deal with our emotions that make it right or wrong. Christians must choose to handle their emotions in the proper manner. We don’t have to allow bitterness to take root in our hearts when we have the love of Christ.
My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
Anger and resentment both carry with them many other feelings that can be hazardous to our spiritual life as well. Anger keeps us from forgiving and makes us want to get back at those people who have hurt us. Anger keeps us blind to the goodness of God’s Word and how it applies into our life. God’s Word teaches us principles on how the Christian is to live. We are to forgive our enemies, not take an eye for an eye. This is the proper way to manage our emotions. Ask God and He will help you forgive.
Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord. On the contrary: ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heal burning coals on his head.’ Do not overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
I’ve met people who were so bitter and angry inside and nothing can make them happy. They have a difficult time smiling, laughing, and enjoying life in its simplest form. They have lost the will to even live. This is what depression and other forms of mind and body diseases originate from. The root of bitterness has a way of keeping the spirit within us lifeless and dead. Some of us who haven’t learned to be aware of the spiritual aspect of who we are, and we allow our negative emotions to impact the way we behave towards others and ourselves. But with God it doesn’t have to be like this!
Jesus spoke, ‘I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
So what can we do? First of all we have to put our trust and confidence in God and give him our negative emotions because anger, bitterness, resentment, and selfishness, these things do not fix our marriage, family, or how we feel inside. What does is learning how to handle these emotions in the proper ways. The more we allow our negative emotions to pile up the more selfish we become. It’s a vicious cycle. But God has asked us to put our faith and trust in Him – give God your anger and bitterness, and let Him give you back a softened heart.
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.
Psalm 46: 1-2
So why are some of us so bitter and angry inside? We are harboring un-forgiveness! We have not managed our emotions properly. We have chosen in our hearts not to forgive someone who has hurt us in the past. When we don’t forgive others their trespasses against us it will not make us feel better emotionally. An unforgiving heart carries with it strong, painful emotions that literally control us and tell us how to behave with others. If we are harboring strong emotions rather than using Christ-like principles to facilitate our emotions then how can we love others in the proper ways?
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no records of wrongs.
I Corinthians 13:4-5
We can choose to change the way we manage our emotions, we can do something about it! God’s Word gives us principles on how we are to handle our emotions in the proper ways. Forgive our trespassers. Why would Jesus tell us over and over again to keep forgiving others? Because by forgiving we don’t allow ourselves to build up angry emotions! Forgiveness clears our heart and mind and allows us the freedom to love.
Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.