Today, it’s tears

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Have your emotions been in wild swings? Mine, too. This morning there are tears. A song a cousin posted on Facebook as she cradled her baby son on her chest left me totally wrecked for a few moments. Thinking about my kids and grandkids, my friends, the people of my congregation – brought a surge of love and concern and then deep and heavy sobs with tears rolling down my face.

So, I guess the emotion of the day, or at least the hour, is sorrow. At one time in my life, I would have repressed those emotions, preferring a steely resolve, a determination to overcome them but I am wiser now. No, I do not bathe in the pathos, nor do I seek to jump on an emotional roller coaster. However, I am more self-aware, more willing to let my heart sort itself out, to understand that I am not a machine, but a warm-blooded human being.

A good friend wrote this on his pastoral blog yesterday, “We are not in normal times. Our normal ways of dealing with things don’t apply. For many, normal resources are out of reach. Social supports have vaporized. So let me say straight up: What you are feeling is normal. You are feeling it differently than everyone else – congratulations – you are not a clone! But whether you are non-plussed or freaked out – for you, you are responding in your normal to the abnormal around you. Own it. But it is time for it to not own you.” –Steve Felker (https://lifesprism.wordpress.com/)

Own your emotions, don’t let them own you. When we are really stressed, and who isn’t these days, it is important to give ourselves time and permission to feel, to process. If we do not, those emotions can get toxic. They can create physical symptoms, morph into depression, or drive us to behaviors that are irrational, even destructive. I love Steve’s practical advice in that same blog. “Stay away from the destructive stuff. Yeah, the 24/7 news feeds are not your friends. Nor is the endless stream of the freaked out social media. Nor are the pot, porn, and booze anesthetics of our culture. They may dull the moment, but they do nothing to order the inner storm stirred in heart and mind by times like these.”  Lots of wisdom there!

Do you know that you can take your emotions into God’s Presence? One of the safest places to ‘let go’ is in prayer! Maybe that is one reason Jesus advise us to pray our most personal prayers alone, not on street corners. When I was in tears this morning, my prayer was not very coherent. It was just “Oh, Jesus,” between sobs, tears, and tissues for a while. And, I know He heard my heart’s cry. Paul teaches us about that very kind of prayer. “And the Holy Spirit helps us in our distress. For we don’t even know what we should pray for, nor how we should pray. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.” (Romans 8:26, NLT)

Prayer of this nature is not just psychologically therapeutic, it changes us and our world, engaging the loving, living God with our needs.

Let me leave you today with these re-assuring words. Meditate for a while on this wonderful truth. “Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.” (Romans 8:26-28, The Message)

How I pray you know His love, that you are able to find hope in His care. Press on, friend, with “faith, hope, and love. And the greatest of these is love.”

________

Way Maker

You are here moving in our midst
I worship You I worship You
You are here working in this place
I worship You I worship You

(You are) Way Maker Miracle Worker Promise Keeper
Light in the darkness my God that is who You are

You are here touching ev’ry heart
I worship You I worship You
You are here healing ev’ry heart
I worship You I worship You

You are here turning lives around
I worship You I worship You
You are here mending ev’ry heart
I worship You yeah I worship You Lord

That is who You are
That is who You are
That is who You are
That is who You are

Even when I don’t see it You’re working
Even when I don’t feel it You’re working
You never stop You never stop working
You never stop You never stop working

Osinachi Kalu Okoro Egbu © 2016 Integrity Music Europe (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing (Integrity Music [DC Cook]))

CCLI License # 810055

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