Posted by: Tamara Harrison | June 29, 2011

Freed by Truth

Some days I just feel discouraged. Nothing in particular may be wrong, I just don’t feel very happy. I don’t enjoy these kinds of days, but they are a reality. I’m having one of those days today—the kind of day where I just feel “blah”. Again, nothing is wrong, I just don’t feel my happiest.

Isn’t it tempting to think that God is the most happy with us when we are having a good day? Sometimes I just think God loves me more when I’m in a good mood. I’ve always been an emotional person, and since I’ve got saved somehow I’ve begun to believe that God doesn’t like negative emotion.

I’m sure a lot of people believe so too. But you know what? I don’t think this is the case. I believe that God is the Creator of emotion; the Bible records many incidents in which Jesus expressed a wide array of emotion.

Jesus wept and was deeply troubled when his beloved friend Lazarus died, even though He would be raising him to life moments later. Ecclesiastes 3:1,4 says “For everything there is a season…a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance”. There is a beautiful balance maintained in the Scriptures, one that tells us that emotion is not wrong, one that even encourages emotion.

Jesus was even angry at the injustice that was going on around Him, and displayed His anger by overturning the tables of the merchants who were exploiting the poor and disrespecting God.

He also showed anger towards the Pharisees, men who twisted the Truth and led people astray.

These emotions may seem confusing to those who have been taught that such expression of emotion is a sign of weakness, or that God is not happy with these types of emotion.

But you know what? The only way emotion turns ugly is when we react to those emotions in ways that are wrong. Exploding at my husband because he did something that pushed my buttons is not the reaction God wants for me. Allowing discouragement to devour me is not the reaction God wants for me. He doesn’t ever want our anger and sorrow to consume us because He loves us too much. He wants to reveal to us the joy and peace that come through following Him.

The beautiful balance lies in looking face to face at your emotions and putting God’s truth above those emotions: “We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9).

Allowing yourself to experience emotion is so important, but allowing those emotions to swallow you whole is never, ever good. And how to avoid this? Living by faith and trust in God: “For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith” (1 John 5:4).

This morning I allowed myself to cry. But I also cried out to God. I cried out for His Truth and I allowed His Truth to infuse my emotions with hope and faith.

“Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings.  And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31-32).

I don’t know where you’re at today with your emotions. I know someone reading this will be so discouraged this morning that faith and hope feel non-existent. Friend, it’s okay to cry. It’s okay to feel upset about what’s happening to you right now. But can I encourage you to cry out to Jesus? Look to the Truth and allow it to permeate your emotions. The Truth will not discourage you from feeling those emotions, it will set you free from being swallowed by them. It will set you free to feel joy and peace once again.

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