Emotional Strongholds

Like a strong unforgiving riptide, emotions can carry us in a direction we don’t want to go. Yesterday I faced challenge after challenge. I felt frustrated. I felt overwhelmed. The wheels came off the bus…I cried! My whirling emotions distracted me and resulted in a most unproductive day. Can you relate?

Sometimes feelings are not kind friends. They can steal away our godly girl power if we are driven by our desires instead of directed by the Holy Spirit. 

Nothing makes me feel more powerless than when I face an emotional stronghold. A strong force of emotions welling up in us stirs up a commotion. Fear. Anxiety. Anger. Frustration. Think about those moments when you lose your temper or respond unkindly to someone. 

I want to be a wise woman that walks not under the power of my emotions but by the power of the Holy Spirit. If my emotions are in the driver’s seat, how can I be led by the Holy Spirit?

Paul gives a strong warning to the Ephesians about letting our emotions have control. This is a warning I need remind myself of each day. Emotions can make me feel powerless, but praise be to God because of Jesus I have another choice. I no longer have to live imprisoned by my emotions but empowered by the Holy Spirit!

“All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else. But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)” Ephesians 2:3-5

But let’s get honest. Strong emotions are impossible to avoid, aren’t they? Emotions aren’t bad. You’ll always have them. They make us human. God gave us emotions. They are a part of our soul. God had emotions also. But when our emotions become strongholds in our life, when they are in the driver’s seat of our decisions – that’s when they can create problems. 

Emotions alert us to needs within our soul, but they are never a reliable source of truth.

You see, we serve a God who loves us and wants us to be led by the Holy Spirit so we can fulfill the God-given purpose he planned for us long ago. But we also have an enemy that would love nothing more than to distract us and derail us from doing what God wants us to do. And he loves to create emotional strongholds in our life by using just the right lies to create that current to pull you away from your purpose. I know this. I’ve been there.

The world thinks of power and freedom as the strength to do whatever we want. But in God’s economy, power and freedom come from walking in obedience to God for his glory. Freedom is not following our desires and doing whatever we want to do. It is being a wise woman and being led by the Holy Spirit.

I want to be wise – don’t you? 

The truth is, brave heart, we are not going to stop feeling those emotions—and that is not our goal. Our goal is to find ways we can face those emotions and remain steadfast to do what God has called us to do. The big choice is this: Who will be in the driver’s seat, my feelings or the Holy Spirit?  

  • Bring your emotions before Jesus and get help. You don’t have to hide your emotions and try to handle them on your own. Bring them to God, brave heart, and gain his perspective to walk in the truth. Let’s get wise by learning and choosing God’s way to walk in your God-given destiny and make a difference.
  • Read Psalms. One look into the book of Psalms and we see how David was not afraid to pour out his emotions. He got angry, depressed, overwhelmed, frustrated; all of that and more. The book of Psalms reminds me that God can handle my emotions. He can help me sort through that strong force and get God’s perspective. I am not alone when that storm hits my soul. The Psalms also remind me that God does not condemn me when I have negative emotions or desires. He wants me to bring them to him so I can get his help instead of hiding them or trying to handle them on my own.

Treasured one, don’t let the enemy steal one bit of that godly girl power. When a strong current of emotions hits your heart, reach out to Jesus for clear direction to stay steady on the path of your purpose. ONWARD!

Nourish Scripture: Ephesians 2:1-10