Day 2: Digging In: Part I
Think about it: how often do you take opportunities to pause and think about what you’re feeling? Most people in our culture don’t pause. Instead, we’ll numb our lives with work, sports, social media, or anything else to try to escape.
Men, in particular, have a more difficult time talking about their feelings. Pastor Andy Stanley once joked that if you ask a man who has just experienced disappointment what he’s feeling, he’s likely to respond by saying, “I’m frustrated.” Ask why he’s frustrated and he’ll say, “Because I’m angry!” Sometimes, it’s just difficult to know exactly why we’re feeling the way we are.
In their study titled Emotionally Healthy Relationships, Pastor Pete Scazzero and his wife Geri provide a simple activity to help people dig-in to what they’re feeling. Let’s try it.
Grab a sheet of paper and give yourself one minute (a full minute!) to answer each of these questions. It will likely be strange to complete this exercise, but it’s an excellent way to help you process through your current emotions.
- What are you mad about?
- What are you sad about?
- What are you anxious about?
- What are you glad about?
Proverbs 14:29; 16:32; Ephesians 4:31-32
What was it like for you to pause and answer the four questions in today’s devotional? Was there anything about your answers to these questions that was a surprise to you?
Some have argued that it’s better to keep our emotions hidden, as our emotions can deceive us. What do you think: Is it better to know and understand your emotions, or is it better to have or express very little emotion?
Did you grow up in a family that encouraged talking about disappointments, frustrations and other feelings? How much has your upbringing impacted how well you understand your emotions today?
What have you learned today about the nature and character of God? How will you better reflect His nature and character today?
Heavenly Father, there are many times when I don’t always recognize the things that may be causing me to feel mad, sad, anxious, or glad. Continue to reveal to me not only what I may be feeling, but also the reason why I may be feeling it, so that I may respond to difficult situations gracefully. In Jesus’ name. Amen.