Growing up in the 80’s, I was greatly influenced by the cultural message that Gillette introduced in 1984 with the tagline, “never let them see you sweat”. The idea was that emotions were perceived as weakness. A similar message was sent to me via the church, in that we were never to trust our emotions. Thus, leaving me with a negative view of emotions, and because of my personality, I tended to just ignore them or deny them, which then leads to an outpouring or over reaction of emotion when they come gushing out of me at the most inopportune times.
Recently, I took a very bold step of faith, quitting my job after 17 years at the same company, and starting my own company. While I had been planning for some time to make a change, the day I actually resigned, I burst into tears and proceeded to cry the entire day! I am very thankful for COVID, because I was working from home. I was shocked at my reaction! I knew I was doing the right thing and the timing was right. Yet, a whirlwind of emotion was stirred up, that really did not subside until about 3 weeks later. It was during this time, that God reminded me that I was human, thus, equipped with emotion. Emotion is not only a great gift from God, it is a warning system when our boundaries have been violated, and a reflection of His image. The key is that we are not to be ruled by our emotions, but certainly, the Bible talks of reflecting on them and processing them in a healthy manner.
Today, I was introduced to Dr. Martyn Lloyd Jones. A wonderful man of God, that has some beautiful, insightful, and blessed sermons on YouTube. While most of us understand the difference of rejoicing in the Lord and feeling happy carnally; he takes it a step further and contends that if we seek righteousness and His face first, not only is joy possible, but so is happiness! While we as humans cannot produce a specific emotion at will, in seeking His face, we will find great joy and happiness. Enjoy!
-Stacy Kageff Davidson