Archive | September 2015

emotions.

God created us with emotions.

Even God has emotions. Keep in mind, however, his emotions are not defined in human terms. Because we cannot fully comprehend him, we are prone to think of him humanly. For example, his anger is sourced in a divine response to evil.

In the article, God Without Mood Swings, Phillip R. Johnson states:

God is [not] literally subject to fits and temper tantrums. His wrath against sin is surely something more than just a bad mood. 

The Bible shows us some of God’s emotions:

love

grief

anger

joy

jealousy

compassionate

suffering

God relates to human emotions. In turn, we relate to him.

Don’t we turn to people who understand us?

Emotions can be wonderful. They make us feel alive! But, we cannot be led by our emotions. We need something solid to anchor our lives to. The wind carries a sailboat but it has to be steered and anchored to its destination.

Truth is our anchor.

Just like we live with physical laws (e.g., gravity), truth is an unseen law that has a way of settling things. The truth is often difficult (thus, “the truth hurts”), but if we embrace it for what it is, despite how we feel, our emotions will line up.

If you have found yourself in a muddled mess of emotions, truth will help settle you. The truth can be that there are no immediate solutions or answers to your situation and you have to endure it.

If you know God has emotions, you know he understands your emotions.

And because he understands your emotions, he will give you comfort, strength, and guidance.

 rexquisite / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

accept.

Life can be hard.

And one of the hardest things is to accept that life is hard.

We know it, but we think it happens to other people.

In one sense, it is good that we don’t dwell on what could happen. Do you see God wired us that way? I realize some of us do worry or are fearful. But that isn’t what God wants for us.

Yes, there are horrendous tragedies which some of us will face. We go through the emotions of pain as we respond to them.

But eventually, we have to accept. Not just mentally, but emotionally. Resting in acceptance comes from trusting that your pain…your loss…is in bigger hands.

There are some things we can change. There are some things we cannot.

I used to cringe at the part of the “Serenity Prayer” that said accept the things you cannot change.

What? I am a go-getter. Couple that with being in a very pro-active church environment that was out to change the world, accepting was not in my vocabulary.

It is now.

It takes time when you face something that inexplicable and devastating and you cannot change it.

This is not a reproach in diminishing God’s ability to heal, comfort, or strengthen us. It also doesn’t mean miracles aren’t real.

It means things will happen that we don’t understand.

The people around you may not have felt the depth of the pain quite like you. The proportion of the time to accept and the pain you are facing has to be equal. It has to take as long as the pain is deep.

And it is okay.

If others do not understand, that is okay, too.

Because you will have a new found confidence in being content with who you are that is not based on what other people think.

The strength and confidence you gain will be equal to the depth of pain you are experiencing. God doesn’t leave us with nothing.

scripture friday.

Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his faithful servants.

– The Bible

Ben Sturner @leverageagency

Ben Sturner @leverageagency

A rainbow appearing to originate from the World Trade Center 

Eve of September 11, 2015

God is with us.

it’s okay.

Far too many times we try to fix things.

Is it because of the fast paced world we live in today? Where everything is analyzed and has a label?

Solutions are usually only one click away. Everyone seems to have an answer.

Rarely, do we hear the right answer: it’s okay.

It’s okay to not be okay.

Stop trying so hard.

Stop listening so much.

Photo credit: / Foter / CC BY

Photo credit: / Foter / CC BY

It’s okay when everything isn’t perfect.

It’s okay if you are overwhelmed.

Go with it. It won’t be like this forever.

predictable.

Life can be unpredictable.

Complex.

Turmoil.

Devastation.

clouds

But if we look closely …

we will discover what is predictable.

Simple.

Order.

Calm.

God.

dahlia 2

feeling rejected.

One form of pain is rejection.

It says:

not wanted.

not liked.

not valued.

Photo credit: KatLevPhoto / Foter / CC BY-NC

Photo credit: KatLevPhoto / Foter / CC BY-NC

God says something very different.

“But if God loved me  he wouldn’t …”

The rain falls on all of us just the same. God loves you enough to help you through the rejection.

After all, Jesus was rejected. He knows.