In my adult life, I’ve taken some sense of value in my ability to stay calm in crazy situations.
Not EVERY time, but mostly.
What this has involved has been taking the time to quiet myself.
Time to rein my thoughts in and turn them around to a positive way of being;
I.e. To look on the bright side.
Philippians 4:8 (ESV) Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Well it seems that through the years of practice with this “Quietude”, there has been an unexpected side effect; that of not feeling the full spectrum of emotion.
I’ll start by saying that over the last several years, if you ask me how I’m doing; my answer would invariably be “Fine”.
My heart has been at peace. My mind has been at rest.
This answer is accurate and correct.
Recently though, something else has been happening.
Circumstances over the last several weeks have caused many emotions to come to the surface.
By that I mean, the tears are closer to the surface than I am accustomed to them being, and I’m perhaps a bit touchier than I like.
I’ve tried and tried to figure out what was happening.
This week, two things happened that seemed to open up a window for me to view the issue in a different way.
- I remembered a quote I had heard from Brene’ Brown;
- I had lunch with my BFF. I was discussing the fact that I wasn’t processing this issue very well, and that I wasn’t really sure how to put it in words. Here’s what she said; (When they know all your secrets, they can get to the heart of things!)
“You have been doing well with your emotions. This one circumstance has been a grief to you for a long time. You cannot sustain yourself in grief mode for that long a period of time.”
(Basically, she was saying that I had been protecting myself and my emotions from burning themselves out.)
So now, things have changed.
“You can grieve now. You can feel the emotions and get them healed.”
These words were like a bright shining light on my soul.
The window is open.
This is where Brene’s quote comes into play; there was definitely a time where numbing out the painful emotions was the right thing to do.
But now, I can go on to “un-numbing” the positive emotions!
I can feel the emotions I need to feel, and get on with things, get on with life.
I can feel some real joy.
Was all that time of “Peace and rest” wrong?
Was all that time of “Peace and rest” untrue?
Was it all counterfeit?
No, No, and No.
The peace and rest that I grew to know and love, was so very real.
I believe it was God’s way of protecting my mind, my heart and my health.
A lengthy sustained period of grief would have destroyed me from the inside out.
Proverbs 17:22 (ESV) A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
So how about you, are your emotions in line with the times you’re in?
Are your thoughts running to the positive or the negative?
Are you thinking on whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable?
“If you don’t like the thought you’re having; have another thought!”Graham Cooke