Emotions are powerful, they spur us into action (or inaction); we do certain things at times and we are shocked by what we’ve done. We make lots of decisions based on how we feel and we indulge in certain activities because of the way we feel.
What is an Emotion?
According to wordnik.com, it is a mental state that arises spontaneously rather than through conscious effort and is often accompanied by physiological changes; a feeling: the emotions of joy, sorrow, reverence, hate, and love.
Emotions are complex states of feelings that influence our thought and behaviour, and our lives would be really boring if we do have emotions. I believe our emotions are a gift from God to help us interact with the world He created and with the people He put in it.
And that’s why you cannot allow your emotions control you; it is a gift given to you by God and this implies you need to gain mastery over your emotions.
Some Thoughts on Emotional Mastery
- Your emotions provide a glimpse into the state of your life
Are you always angry? Easily irritated? Do you hate all men? Are you afraid of everything? Do you wake up filled with happiness? Are you perpetually joyful?
Your emotions are calling you to pay attention to the state of your life right now; it is either you continue on the path you’re on or change lanes.
- Emotions do not tell the whole story
Your emotions only tell a part of the story; how you feel is a variable in the complex equation of your life.
Someone broke your heart or it was your best friend that betrayed your trust or you are excited at the thought of seeing your husband after a long time; at the time you are feeling all these emotions, they are valid but they will pass.
Do you know what is unchanging? The nature of God.
- Yes, your best friend broke your heart but Jesus bore our griefs and sorrows and He is able to help you in that situation.
- Do you feel afraid because the future looks bleak? God has promised that He has a future filled with hope for you.
So you see, your emotions only tell part of the story.
- Do not make important decisions when emotions are running high
Our emotions influence a great deal of the decisions we make but we should allow them guide us instead of it being the deciding factor. I love using relationships as examples; we start dating people mainly because of how we feel around them, at least that’s why I started dating my husband back then. Over time, talk of marriage starts and there is another decision to be made. Should you make your decision solely of how the other person makes you feel or should you make the decision based on other factors?
For a decision as important as marriage, emotions cannot take the lead. Your emotions are not there to lead you astray but I think of them as guideposts; for example, you would want to consider attraction as a key indicator in choosing a life partner but it cannot be the only reason. I’m sure you get the gist.
- You can change how you feel by changing your thoughts and your words
If your predominant emotions are not what you like, please realize that the power to change them is within you.
Try to remember a particularly painful memory and hold that thought in your mind for a minute or two; you’ll probably not feel too great.
When you enter into gratitude mode and you start recounting all that God has done for you; you will see that there is a shift in your emotions. This means that the words you speak can change the train of your thoughts and thereby cause a change in how you feel.
You can therefore utilize the power that God has put in His Word; when situations around you are causing your emotions to dive into the negative, speak the Word of God. First of all, the consistent speaking of God’s Word over that situation will cause a turnaround and secondly, those negative feelings will be done away with.
Speaking the Word is not just at certain times of the day, whenever the negative thoughts enter your mind, counter immediately with the Word of God. Think of this as a defense against a blitz attack.
Emotions are powerful and they have a great effect on the quality of life we live; however, the Word of God is “truer” than how you feel.
Have you ever made a purely emotional decision you came to regret? Please share below in the comments section.