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By choice, I’ve enjoyed hibernating the last week or so, both recuperating from and reveling in the joy of our time with family visiting from Australia. I was thankful that I was able to set aside things usual and listen to my soul’s need for time to soak in the lush memories as well as allow myself full rest. My spirit counseled my slightly dis-eased soul, “Never mind the To Do list for now.”

E-motion-driven isn’t really livin’
Emotions could be called the flesh’s early warning system. They excel at rapid reaction (rather than reasonable response)…which means we can go into high gear reaction long before the “now hear this” Holy Spirit whisper can get our attention

I ‘ve encountered many an emotionally driven Christian who was also well-versed in Scripture. Heresy? Heresay? I dare say. experiential truth, Lest you think I’m finger pointing, I present myself as Exhibit A. I came to the Lord early, but truly, I knew Him not relationally. Rather I was introduced to Him as the Doorkeeper to Heaven…the entrance fee…be a good girl…a very good girl. No wonder I eagerly sought to learn the “How to’s ” of Christianity, leaning heavily towards the Thou Shalt Not’s.

I threw myself into doing what I thought a good Christian would do very early in life only to discover much later that I remained an emotional child. (And the throwing myself into Christianity included a few tantrums.) God’s desire is for us to willingly attune our inner ears to listen eagerly for His still small voice. The Holy Spirit follows suit, whispering, “Draw near and hear.” Emotions aren’t familiar with such genteel protocol. Rather, they shout, they pout and let it all hang out within us. Their motive: To lead us in the paths they pressure us to follow.

My emotions were long the tenured traffic director within me. and I was rarely directed toward His Avenues of Peace. Uproar was the usual detour. Feeling fearful? My Emotions would whimper, “Run and hide.” Untamed feelings didn’t abide with my turning to the Lord for courage. Angry? My emotions roared, “Let ‘em have it.” “How dare they treat you that way.” I was adept at lending an ear to the clamor within and that may be true for you as well. Our emotions have clout because they are so practiced; practiced at being in charge.

Even the most seasoned Christians…faithful in serving the Body…leaders of others…can be at war with their inner demands; their Goliaths. There can still be the need to become a David (practiced in bringing down our bellowing giant with one determined toss of the smooth stone of CHOOSING to wholly trust the Lord.) When fears leap up to challenge us, our response can be far from David’s righteous anger over the Lordship of God being scoffed at. When emotions bellow “jump”, we tend to stand at at-tension and as we ask, “How high?”

Sadly there’s a whole lot of stewin’ in our doin’ , but not much be-ing involved in trying to do what’s right. Jesus isn’t looking for robots. His desire is for us to be robust…i.e. strongly formed, vigorous, firm in purpose.

So what’s a disciple to do?

“Choose this day whom you will serve” Josh. 24:15
“Let Christ be you umpire, settling all questions arising within you.” From. Col. 3:15

Our choices prepare us to hear the prevailing voice within us. Hearing His voice and then living by choice – Now that’s REALLY LIVIN’ !

As I was reflecting on the E-motional Devotionals to date, a niggling thought
rose up within casting doubt on my underlying theme….namely, wavering faith, even while savoring being His. That brought to mind phrases from Mark 9:24 (parenthetic words are my pleas) :

Lord I believe…(increase my spiritual clout)
Help Thou my unbelief…(decrease my soul’s doubt)

I was encouraged by my friend Barbara Z’s response to the tone of my EDs:
“I had a thought that you were putting the Humanity in Christianity …I think all of us
feel we are expected to be or act a certain way because we are Christians, when we
we all get tired and experience our moments of doubt.”

Our frailties, His opportunity for His Light to shine through me…

:”We have this Treasure in earthen vessels” 2 Cor. 4:7

“…My power is made perfect in weakness…” 2 Cor. 9:11

Lord, deliver me from the Myth that “acting as If” I’m perfect will cause people to pursue You…and accept me. Help me embrace the reality that my flaws cause others to risk The Great Pursuit…and, amazingly, … well, usually,.. cause them to like me warts and all!

What vanity; what lack of honesty;
Playing the charade of having it all together;
Of being in control of my life,
When, in truth, I’m struggling to become real.
(That is, when I’m not working hard to conceal.)

Why is it so hard to reveal myself?
To embrace myself wholly as I am.
How very proud I am of my strengths;
How loathe to acknowledge my weaknesses…

Not recognizing that those very weaknesses
Are the doors offering an invitation
To others, with seeing hearts, to enter;
My imperfections providing boldness for their approach.

Weaknesses; searchlights signaling safety and welcome

“I love your writing. You really have a way with zingers, but I think what really matters is the life wisdom you bring to the page. You say hard things, but you make them go down like warm apple pie.” David Kopp - executive editor, Multnomah Books

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