The example of Jesus and the language of the book of Psalms offer tools for recognizing our emotions, accepting them and channeling their expression. While our feelings and actions are related, they are distinct. Accurately identifying our emotions and paying attention to what gives rise to them can prevent us from acting in ways we might later regret.
By becoming more aware of what triggers my own strong feelings and reactions, I can respond more thoughtfully in stressful situations. I can also avoid mindlessly absorbing the emotions of others, as though what they feel is what I should feel.
As we practice good stewardship of our emotions, let us be gentle with ourselves. We can be honest and courageous in expressing the whole range of our emotions to God, then we can channel our emotional energy into actions of love and compassion toward others.
This message is an excerpt from “God can take it” by Julie A. Kanarr in the September 2019 issue of Gather magazine.
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