Monday we talked about some hard choices that have to be made if we want to learn to control our emotions (instead of the other way around). I started out by asking you to answer some questions about your foundations for life, and promised that today, we'd learn just how to overcome lies with the truth. Here we go.
Overcoming lies with the truth
That day last week, as I sat in my driveway feeling my emotions go from 0 to 10 in a matter of seconds, I realized that I had taken my eyes off of Jesus, and the truths of God's Word, and put them on what I could see and feel in that moment—two little boys giving me a run for my money, disobedience, challenge, and failure.
Most of all, I saw a mom who couldn't control her kids, and I felt totally incompetent. Lies.
The truth of the matter is that not every day of my life is like this. Sometimes my boys do obey. Sometimes they don't challenge me to my whit's end, and sometimes I end my day feeling good, capable, and like I loved them well. But in that moment, none of that mattered. My feelings escalated based on the reality of what I was currently seeing, and it took the Word of God to bring a new reality.
A new reality
In Romans 8:6 it says this (ESV):
"For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace."
It's easy for me to see now that this verse describes exactly what I did and have done in countless other moments just like the one we've been discussing. I set my mind on something other than Jesus and His never-changing truths. And that, my friends, leads to hopelessness, depression, and the death of our ability to overcome our emotions.
Thankfully, the truth was waiting for me just around the corner. With God's help, I was able to step outside of my current circumstances and remember what His Word says about me and my children.
It was a choice—a simple truth, but difficult application—to see the situation through the lens of God's Word. Setting my mind on the Spirit—that gift of God that is able to work in me making me more like Jesus—brought back my peace, and helped me see God's reality instead of my own.
- These children aren't all bad. This was just one bad day sandwiched between two pretty good ones.
- I'm starting to see a repentent heart in my older son, leading me to believe that the decision he says he's made for Christ might be real.
- God has my best at heart, and theirs too.
- He's always working in us for His good pleasure.
- He sees us, hears us, and loves us more than we could ever love ourselves.
- He's just waiting to give us all the good gifts that are ours because of His work on the cross.
- We're safe in His embrace.
Really what I want you to understand friends, is that what we can see and feel are often entirely different from God's reality—the true reality.
And speaking of the power to overcome
Some of you are thinking to yourselves right now, "well that's all fine and dandy, Brooke. But when I'm in the heat of the moment, I get so blinded by my emotions that I'm not sure I'll even think about making a choice to believe God over my feelings."
We'll talk about that a little bit Friday.
Question: What situations quickly cause your emotions to escalate so that you have trouble remembering the truth of God's Word?
Tomorrow, please join Stacey Thacker and me on Tricia Goyer's Living Inspired Radio show! We'll be talking about Hope for the Weary Mom at 4PM EST/3PM CST.