Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Valentine to the One Who Means the Most

Valentine's Day is about love, isn't it? I pray for friends and family, God's Love on this day and all days.
When I was a teenager and young adult, I thought love was that feeling that gave me butterflies in my stomach. I couldn't wait to see that person again and there was an ache, almost a pain in separation. When I saw them, my heart would leap, beating fast. I became lightheaded and hypersensitive to every word and expression of my beloved. When those feelings went away, I thought that I had fallen out of love. That person became a non-entity, someone that I couldn't get away from fast enough.
Now I understand that feelings fool us. Love isn't a feeling, it's an action, a choice, a commitment. My feelings can get me into trouble. I most often "feel" love, contentment, serenity, anger, frustration, disappointment, disgust and dislike. My feelings are strong and can pull me up and down like a roller coaster. I can be up on a cloud one minute and down in the pit of despair the next minute. I have learned that the ups and downs are just part of the circus in my head. Feelings and emotions don't get me through life, they complicate it. Love today is a choice to put God's love for me into action. I have not yet learned to love unconditionally, but daily(and even hourly)give up control to the Lord by placing my emotions/feelings in His Hands.
I always had very strong emotions and my feelings would overpower me. Today, with God's help, I understand that I chose to not have self-control(completely different than trying to control others, BTW) over my emotions and developed a bad habit of having outbursts of emotion. I used to say, "Oh well, that's just how I am", but now I see that I was being selfish and lazy when it came to expressing myself. I didn't care how it affected anyone else, I just spewed out whatever passed through my head. In my heart, I was holding a lot of resentment and bitterness for what I perceived had been done to me(the victim). Now, little by little, The Lord is revealing my character flaws to me and giving me a chance to change them through His grace.
My Valentine today is to my Lord and Savior, Redeemer and Gentle Shepherd, Jesus. I love you, Lord and give you all the praise for the changes you are working in my life.

1 comment:

Diana said...

Auntee. You are so loved. God is really doing a work in you. One thing that I was told a few years ago, changed the way I thought forever. I was told, "Emotions are stupid." Not that they are unimportant or futile, because emotions can be a pure blessing. But emotions don't know anything! They are just, dumb. It takes our minds to tell our emotions what is ACTUALLY happening. If we didn't have reason, our emotions would turn us into animals. We'd just react to everything without thinking.

My dog Sophia is going through this crazy little adjustment period. She reminds me of a foster child (which she really has been for two years) that needs constant reassurance. I tell her, "you're home now. I'm not giving you away." But she doesn't understand and so she stays anxious and worried that soon she will be back at the shelter like both other times. Because she doesn't have reason, she can't remind herself to feel reassured by believing what I've said to her. She just feels the way she feels. She's a pooch! So I continue to give her the extra attention she needs and hope one day she begins to feel secure.

God appeals to our spirits and our minds (be transformed by the renewing of your mind...Romans). Our emotions have to be told by us to follow the leader: our minds. So, whenever I feel anything strongly I realize that I have programmed my body to react that way, but now my words and actions are no longer going to reflect my instant emotions. I am going to turn the volume down on my feelings and allow my reasoning to take the floor. It's only when our reasoning has been given over to the truth of God's loving sovereignty that we can defeat the monster of darkness inside ourselves. After excusing ourselves for feeling something by rationalizing it, we have given over our humanity to our emotion and must wrestle it back. Only by the Holy Spirit is this ever done. :) Any other time when someone has emotional control (like zen buddhists for example) it is because they believe a lie that enslaves them to pride. Pride inspires the most dangerous emotions that can try to lift us above God, even. If we learn how to be virtuous and self-controlled without the help of God, how will He convince us we need Him? Then we would be separated from Him for eternity which is the fate of most "good people".

Rejoice in your weakness, for when we are weak He is strong.

Thanks for letting me express myself on your blog. I learn so much from what God is doing in your life. :)