It takes wisdom and strength to control your emotions.
Because they are part of you, they can be tricky guides. But the Holy-Spirit is ever willing to help control your emotions before they control you.
I was bullied a lot as a child. In rare occasions I find memories of this traumatizing experience spilling into my present, paralyzing my ability to stay positive and trust God that I can only be restored in Him, not in the stories I write or anything I do.
But in Christ alone.
In Primary School school, there was this boy in my class that kept picking on me for no reason. Probably because I looked vulnerable and I kept to myself a lot.
He would hit me so bad I would cry.
I couldn’t tell anyone because I was so afraid that he’d keep hurting me if I did. So it continued for a long time until my mother intervened.
I can’t remember how she found out. I think I refused to go to school one day and after much questioning from her, I spoke up.
She followed me to school ensuring the situation was resolved as soon as possible.
When my class teacher learned about it, she was upset that I didn’t speak up on time. The bully was warned and my teacher switched my seat.
I also got bullied a lot by seniors as a boarding house student but that’s a story for another day.
Now you may wonder, how does my bullying story relate to today’s topic?
Check Your Motivating Factor
The first way you can control your emotions is to screen your motives before the Holy-Spirit.
I know it feels noble to create foundations for women, children and defend the purpose of feminism in a patriarchal society.
But as believers, we aren’t to act on our emotions or based on every need in our path.
Due to my physical abuse experience, I could be motivated to fight a cause or build a foundation for children with a past similar to mine.
I have had many eureka moments that made me feel my calling or purpose was to build a legacy or something that meets people’s needs. I wanted to make impact where necessary, ensuring other children wouldn’t go through what I went through.
Until I realized I would only be acting on my emotions. And God does not MOVE on emotions.
Now this isn’t advocating for us to ignore people or children around us. BUT when it comes to establishing projects or ideas, I’m learning I need to wait on God and know if it’s the route God wants me to take. Or he’d rather I focus on another path he’s calling me into.
Checking your motivating factor through the help of the HolySpirit can help you control your emotions.
Submit the feeling and wait on it.
I once created a bible study group about two to three years ago based on the need I felt God was placing in my heart. The feeling was so strong I believed I had to run with it immediately.
Until a few months later, I realized I’d moved hastily due to my emotions.
I was so zealous about sharing the gospel and helping others grow in faith. This made me ignore the spiritual ethics and the timing required for the process.
There was a time I believed any good thought or idea dropping into my soul must be from God.
Wrong! God didn’t possess me so I still have my own wills and ways!
I’m learning to keep submitting my will to His and wait on it, regardless of how I feel about a situation.
If God gives you an idea, awesome! God will give you His will, but He will also give you His way! His will may come in one day, but His way might take years or decades to come through.
The goal is to please God, not just do things.
For example, God asked Noah to build an ark in One day. But God took time sending him instructions on the way it should be done and how it should be done. There was a consistent obedience Noah had to follow through.
It took years to finish the project.
Yet his project saved and preserved the Messiah’s lineage.
Our Ultimate purpose for doing must be ‘Christ-centric’
An unbeliever can create things, build legacies and foundations because for them, it’s a ‘good’ cause. Because they don’t have any other thing greater than those legacies.
So what’s the difference between us?
As believers, we have been called beyond doing good or what we ‘think’ is right.
We’ve been called to do God. We are called to live out Christ.
And the only way to do God is be led by His Spirit, not emotions or needs. -Romans 8:14.
If I give my body to be burned and have not love, it profits me nothing.1corinthians 13:3
This love in the above scripture is based on God leading us and not just acting on our emotions or our definition of love. Or what we feel needs to be done.
This is the same reason why Jesus did not heal everyone during his time and I am sure there were thousands of needs.
But he only did what his father willed him to do.
Now while many of us claim to love Jesus, some of us would be terribly offended if Jesus was physically present today.
Because like an enigma, he moved by the Spirit, not needs.
His goal was nothing else but doing His father’s will.
Then I said, ‘Here I am–it is written about me in the scroll— I have come to do YOUR will, my God.'”-Hebrews 10:7HEBREWS 1o:7
While Jesus was moved by compassion for the crowd, his compassion was bent to His Father’s will. He was compassionate with knowledge and wisdom. Saving men’s souls (eternal need) superseded His desire to help people by miracles, signs and wonders.
The latter is meant to help them into the former.
And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hellmatthew 5:30
Understand God’s will is BETTER than your emotions
And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall NOT judge after the SIGHT of his EYES, neither reprove after the HEARING of his EARS.isaiah 11:3
Because Jesus was a Man, he also had the tendency to judge by his eyes and ears. He cried, he got hungry and thirsty, he was vulnerable at the cross when He cried about God the Father forsaking Him.
Jesus was also an emotional being! But he’d learned to control his emotions and put it under the leash of the Spirit.
Let’s look at the following illustration
Imagine reporting to Jesus that your brother should rightly divide the property and Jesus responds with;
‘Beware of covetousness, for a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of things he possesses.’ Luke 12:15-21
Dear Jesus, I’m asking you to show justice and you accuse me of being covetous????
Imagine asking Jesus to raise your dead son and he says;
‘The dogs don’t have a right to partake of the children’s food.’ Matthew 15:26-27
I know some of us may fight this. For a long time, I fought it, till the eyes of my understanding were opened.
The Holy-Spirit is more trustworthy than our emotions
To control your emotions, your heart must be willing to submit to this truth. I must be able to see myself as ‘foolish’ to accept God’s wisdom.
I know it feels harsh to see needs and not do something or say something about it.
It could feel insensitive to stay quiet when everyone is fighting a good cause around you.
But feelings are not accurate indicators. We need to trust God to help us control our emotions.
Only God knows all for He alone is wise.
While I would like to emphasize that God isn’t calling us to be cold hearted humans, or ignore people when they need help, he sees the bigger picture and knows what could happen if we intervene in matters we were not supposed to.
I’ve had God lead me to help certain people and contribute to certain causes. But tooting my horn means losing my reward.-Matthew 6: 2-5
Besides the goal isn’t to show the world but to follow the Spirit’s leading.
My motives must be Spiritually driven.
We need to put in mind that God loves those hurting people far better than we can, and in his wisdom knows how to work his wonder in their spirit, soul and body.
So why not let him lead us? We aren’t wiser than Him. He sees the end from the beginning.
We cannot afford to judge a book by its cover. So we must yield to God as he wills, not as the goose bumps rises on our skin, or how emotional we feel about a matter.
For a spiritual man is quick to listen, SLOW to speak and SLOW to become angry (or react) James 1:19
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Bloom with Love. Xx!