Many years ago as a young pastor’s wife, I remember asking my mom how I could get a better grip on my emotions. I felt like my heart and thoughts were all over the place, and it was driving me crazy! She walked over to her bookshelf, pulled out a book, flipped it open, and handed it to me. It was a positive description of my very “feelings” oriented personality.
Right then, I began to understand that my emotions are not a negative thing about me to be handled. Instead, my emotions are part of the unique way God has created me. Remember Psalm 139?
I’ve learned that just like all the other things in my personality my emotions can serve Him, me, my family, and my church beautifully when surrendered to Jesus. And yet, just like all the other things in my personality… when I’m living in a self-centered and self-protecting heart space, my emotions can also wreak havoc in those same places.
As we are finishing up our discussion on the marker of emotional health in the ministry wife, I would love to share a quote that I read a few years ago. I often go back to this when I need to regain emotional perspective.
An emotionally healthy woman grounds her identity in Jesus and works to understand when identity issues are making her overly sensitive, abrasive, or foolish. (Leading Women Who Wound by Sue Edwards and Kelley Matthews, p. 47-48)
Emotions are helpful and can be so good for relationships and ministry but only as our identity is grounded in Truth. And while I still have plenty of moments where my emotions get the better of me (as some might describe as being overly sensitive or moody), I’ve found that as I’ve made understanding biblical Jesus-given identity a great ambition of my life, my emotions fall in the right places more often than not.
So when emotions overwhelm, recognize that they are actually pointing you toward your need for Truth and the safety that is Jesus.
I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge… Psalm 61:2-3 NLT
by Jamy Fisher