Fri., Feb. 23, 2018
Proverbs 29:11 – Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end.
Anyone else feel like their emotions have been on a huge roller coaster ride the last 10 days?
On Ash Wednesday, an unbelievable event happened in Parkland, FL, where 17 people at a school were killed. What a range of emotions the students and staff that go to this school have experienced, as well as their families and the entire community. The wake of this and similar events emotional carnage is impossible to measure.
On the flipside, our household has enjoyed watching the Olympics. Need a little pick-me-up?
Google “USA Women’s Hockey Olympic shoot out” or “USA Women’s Cross-Country Team Finish” and your adrenaline will quickly be pumping! Did you catch any of Lindsay Vonn’s emotional interviews? It is impossible for those of us who have never been involved in preparing for the Olympics understand the depth of time, commitment, sacrifice, determination and breadth of emotion the athletes and their families endure.
Many hearts have been touched in the death of an American icon, Billy Graham. Often dubbed, “American’s Pastor,” Graham took seriously the gospel’s call to take the word of Jesus to the ends of the earth. Graham took this charge literally. And changed millions of lives as a result.
Our country, communities and individuals have gone through lots of these emotional roller coasters before. Personally, my emotions can go from joyful to hurt or embarrassed in 3.5 seconds.
It’s hard to imagine Jesus going through an emotional roller coaster. I’m confident he did. We see this captured in “Jesus wept” (John 11:35) upon the depth of his good friend Lazarus to compassion he expressed to the children (Luke 18:16) as he drew little people into his arms.
What can we learn from recent events? Billy Graham? Jesus? Just a few thoughts:
- Allow yourself to experience emotions. It’s OK. Let’s give ourselves permission to do so.
- Emotions can challenge us into action. When our hearts are deeply touched by something, may we be the ones who say, “Can something different be done?”
- Keeping ourselves calm is not easy. When calmness is elusive, may faith in Christ bring us calmness and quiet our over-active souls.
- Even when our bodies wear out and our roles on this earth changes, may we have enough good sense to allow Christ to continue to speak through us.
Making ourselves vulnerable is more than a little challenging for some stoic people. It’s easy for these same stoic people to wish those who wear their emotions on their sleeves would find a more appropriate way to show emotions. Maybe what we all need is just a little more understanding of emotions like Jesus seemingly had.
Lord Jesus – thank you for sharing with us how important it is to exhibit our emotions. Help us keep calm in your love and truly be agents of your grace to others. Amen.
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