The Gift of Emotional Healing

“Beauty for Ashes” by Joyce Meyer

The other day, I came into work and noticed a beautiful bright purple book on my desk. “Beauty for Ashes” by Joyce Meyer was given to me by a coworker.

Healing comes in many forms; it’s not always physical. As a nurse, I have to keep in mind that healing our hearts is just as important as healing our bodies. In order to heal the heart, we must honor as well as overcome our emotions.

One of the greatest lessons we could ever learn is to not make emotions our god. It’s much easier said than done. You know, most people struggle with this. The Bible tells us to die to the flesh, but what does that even mean? To die to the flesh is to take complete authority over the emotional body. When we choose sleep over time with God, when we have an emotional outburst against a neighbor who wronged us, when we choose to end a marriage for unbiblical reasons such as offense, or “falling out of love” we are putting our emotions over the Word of God.

The woman who gave this book to me is un-ironically one of the most emotionally in control people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Further, she is also one of the most joyous and peaceful people I have ever known. Self-control (emotional control), joy, and peace are all fruits of the spirit. God intends for us all to live in the spirit by the spirit and enjoy it’s fruit.

We must first learn how to recognize and identify our emotions. We can do this in many different ways— journaling, talking to a therapist, praying, just to name a few. Get used to telling God and/or yourself, “I feel—because—-“ at various times throughout the day until it becomes second nature.

It’s important to allow yourself, that is, give yourself permission to feel whatever it is you feel without judgment. Then, give yourself time to feel whatever emotion it is that you feel. Have patience and understanding with yourself the same way you would with a dear friend or family member.

Next, we must learn to express our feelings to those around us. Learn to speak up and communicate to other people, especially those closest to you.

In recognizing our emotions, sitting with them for a time, and then expressing them, we are honoring our emotions. We are honoring ourselves.

The next step we must take is to let our emotions know who is boss! We must take authority over our flesh, over our emotions. This is quite possibly the hardest part. We have to let go. We have to forgive. We have to move on in love. We have to remain steadfast and immovable in our obedience to God. We have to do things we don’t feel like doing.

Have you ever committed to something and you later regretted it? I think it happens to the best of us. The one who is ruled by their emotions is the one who breaks their commitment or even worse makes up a lie to get out of it. Don’t be that person. Instead, be the person with integrity, the one who follows through regardless of how you feel, the one that can be trusted to keep their word. It’s ok to cry out to God and express that you don’t want to do whatever it is you committed to, allowing yourself to feel all the negative things you feel. In fact, that’s exactly what you should do. Then go do that thing, refusing to be moved by your emotions. It’s in doing this time and time again you will develop greater respect for as well as faith in yourself. It’s in choosing to live this way you are able to come to know you, the real you, underneath all of your emotions.

We all need to learn the role emotions are supposed to play in our lives. They’re important; they’re there for a reason. They add “sparkle” to our lives, and they give us insight into ourselves as well as others. Let’s face it—emotions, even the not so good ones, make life worth living and are what distinguishes us from machines and robots. We should make ourselves aware of them, feel them, express them to others, and then learn how to let them go. It’s important that we give ourselves permission to feel things, all things, and then move on. This is how we heal; this is how we grow; this is how we become stronger, and this is how we come to know ourselves and others the way God intended.

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