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 In some Christian circles, repressing or disavowing authentic emotions is considered a virtue or perhaps even a gift of Spirit. Denying anger, ignoring pain, skipping over depression, running from loneliness, and avoiding doubt are not only considered normal but actually virtuous ways of living out one’s spiritual life.

But this is not the model we find in Jesus, who freely expressed his emotions without shame or embarrassment:

    1. He shed tears (Luke 19:41).
    2. He was filled with joy (Luke 10:21).
    3. He felt overwhelmed with grief (Mark 14:34).
    4. He was angry and distressed (Mark 3:5).
    5. He was sorrowful and troubled (Matthew 26:37).
    6. His heart was moved with compassion (Luke 7:13).
    7. He expressed amazement (Mark 6:6, Luke 7:9).

Jesus was anything but an emotionally frozen Messiah.

In Gethsemane, we see a fully human Jesusanguished, sorrowful, and spiritually overwhelmed. He is pushed to the extremes of his human limits: and being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground (Luke 22:44).

So, we must ask ourselves: Where did we get the idea that acknowledging and expressing authentic emotion is somehow less than spiritual? And why do we believe that we canor somehow shouldgrow in spiritual maturity without simultaneously growing in emotional maturity?

And then there’s the example of Job:

After this, Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his

birth. He said:

“May the day of my birth perish,

and the night that said, ‘A boy is conceived!’

That daymay

it turn to darkness;

may God above not care about it;

may no light shine on it.

May gloom and utter darkness claim it once more. . . .

If only my anguish could be weighed

and all my misery be placed on the scales!

It would surely outweigh the sand of the seas—no

wonder my words have been impetuous.

The arrows of the Almighty are in me,

my spirit drinks in their poison;

God’s terrors are marshaled against me.”

(Job 3:15a; 6:1—4)

 

Job was one of the richest men in the world in his day. In contemporary terms, his assets would have included a fleet of Rolls-Royces, private airplanes, yachts, thriving global companies, and significant real estate holdings. “He was the greatest man among all the people of the East” (Job 1:3). After a series of natural disasters, however, something unthinkable happensJob is reduced to poverty and his ten children are killed in a terrible natural disaster. When he attempts to get on his feet, he is infected with sore boils from the soles of his feet to the top of his head. Physically, it looks like he is about to die at any moment. His wifes compassionate counsel? Curse God and die (Job 2:9).

Job finds himself alone, isolated, and living outside the city walls in the garbage dump. As the text indicates, Job is very angry. But there is a lesson for us even in Job’s anger. Here is how author Philip Yancey describes it:

One bold message in the Book of Job is that you can say anything to God. Throw at him your grief, your anger, your doubt, your bitterness, your betrayal, your disappointmenthe can absorb them all. As often as not, spiritual giants of the Bible are shown contending with God. They prefer to go away limping, like Jacob, rather than to shut God out. In this respect, the Bible prefigures a tenet of modern psychology: you can’t really deny your feelings or make them disappear, so you might as well express them. God can deal with every human response save one. He cannot abide the response I fall back on instinctively: an attempt to ignore him or treat him as though he does not exist. That response never once occurred to Job.”

In the same way, God invites us to feel our emotions, experiencing them without self-condemnation, and exploring them in his loving presence.

Question to Consider

In what ways do you tend to suppress or deny difficult emotionsanger, sadness, fearrather than admit them to yourself and God?

Prayer

Father, the idea of being emotionally transparent with youespecially when my emotions are rawis very difficult. In fact, it almost seems disrespectful. Thank you, Lord, that you love all of methe good, the bad, and the uglyand that your love is without conditions. In Jesus name, amen.

________

 

Adapted from Emotionally Healthy Relationships Day by Day: A 40-Day Journey to Deeply Change Your Relationships by Peter Scazzero. 

In this groundbreaking devotional book, Peter Scazzero reintroduces and expands upon the ancient spiritual discipline of the Daily Office. The basic premise is simple: Christians need to intentionally stop to be with God twice each day to create a continual and easy familiarity with God’s presence for the rest of the day.

 

 

Pasted from: Biblegateway.com

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      Yesterday as I sat with the Lord, I heard Him say, "Sound the alarm! A spirit of intimidation is coming against many of My prophets right now. Tell them to continue to stand and not give ear to this spirit of intimidation, but to be encouraged and know that they are now moving into a new land of inheritance."

      The Lord keeps speaking to me about how there is a battle over the prophets right now to "muzzle" them and "silence" in many different ways, but I hear the Spirit of the Lord saying "Now is the time to get up on your feet and speak!"

      For this spirit of intimidation is coming to cause you to cower, to cause you to shrink back and to cause you to bow beneath its taunts and lies. But stand strong, prophets of God; hold the stones of the Word of God in your hand and continue to hurl them in faith.

      This spirit of intimidation and fear is raising itself up like a Goliath because there is a crossing over taking place right now where you are moving into a new land of inheritance. I heard the Spirit of God whispering "So many things are about to change. So many things are about to change." and all around me, I could see the "landscape" changing.

      There is shifting, a positioning and transition that is taking place over many prophets right now. The Lord is leading you into new places, new opportunities, new realms and new places to decree the Word of the Lord, and the enemy knows how the glory of God is going to be displayed as He moves powerfully through you, so he is attempting to cause you to run into the caves like Elijah.

      Do not run. Do not withdraw. Stand! Stand! Stand! For I see the Lord has assigned more angelic hosts with you than ever before. The enemy is whispering his lies of danger and harm, but the Lord is decreeing His protection over you. You are overshadowed by Him as you make Him, the Most High, your dwelling place.

      The Lord showed me that Psalm 91 is very key for the body of Christ right now, but especially the prophets. This spirit of fear and intimidation is doing all it can with its lies and foreboding to see you move from a place of rest and confidence in the Lord to a place of anxiety and fear to hinder your intimacy, cloud your vision and steal your clarity. No more!

      In this vision, as I saw the landscape change, I saw Jesus standing in the midst of this new landscape with a huge smile on His face, and He looked at the prophets of His heart and spoke: "You shall know My peace, My rest and My empowerment like a tidal wave in this new land of inheritance. For what I am calling you to and positioning you into is bigger than you have imagined and the spirit of intimidation would seek to cause you to withdraw, but I say unto you that greater shall the demonstration of My power be through you. Greater shall the demonstration of My goodness, My kindness and the power of My spoken Word. This spirit of intimidation would seek to keep you hidden, where this is the time where I am positioning you to shine and reflect Me brighter than ever before."

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      The Lord showed me that many prophets have been in intense fire, and it is not something to think of as strange. For there have been fires of opposition, but there have also been fires of purification that the Lord is releasing to prepare you for the new land of inheritance that He has for you. It's a new land of destiny and a new land of partnering with Him and all that is yours in Christ.

      The fire has been hot, but in the embracing of the fire of the Lord, there is a deep maturing, preparation and strengthening that is taking place within you. The Lord's heart is for you to flourish in this new land, and the Lord has been working deeply in the hearts and souls of His prophets in this season to bring to the surface things that would hinder and hold you back. The Lord has been inviting the prophets to embrace the fire and allow the Spirit of God to do whatever He needs to do to prepare you for this new land of inheritance. Embrace His fire to purify and prepare you.

      The fires of opposition have been turned up seven times stronger, but the Lord is encouraging you to look not at the fires of opposition, but to look at Him. In the fire of opposition, He is strengthening you and deepening your trust in Him and His protection and what He speaks, so you are unaffected by the wind, waves and large flames that surround you. I continue to hear the Spirit of God decreeing over and over "You will not be harmed. You will not be touched. Stay close to Me and abide in My Word, for the lies of the enemy are poisonous darts sent to attempt to extinguish your faith, hinder your movement and bring confusion upon you. You will not withdraw, you will move forward in greater boldness because of the empowerment of My Spirit."

      "At that moment the earth shook beneath them, causing the building they were in to tremble. Each one of them was filled with the Holy Spirit, and they proclaimed the word of God with unrestrained boldness" (Acts 4:31, TPT).

      The Lord showed me that in this new era we have entered as the body of Christ, the prophets of God are going to begin moving in the power of the Spirit like Elijah and Elisha. There is going to be a significant increase of the power of God displayed through the prophets and the spoken word of the Lord through them, the decree of God to release creative miracles, bringing sudden shifts, alignments and breakthroughs. This is why the spirit of intimidation is attempting to silence you.

      I kept hearing the Lord say "My prophets are going to move in greater resurrection power! There will be powerful demonstrations of My resurrection power through My prophets in this season. Dry bones, bodies, dry and dead places suddenly coming to life by My resurrection power that is released through the decree that will flow out of the mouths of My prophets. In this new era, I am increasing the display and demonstration of My resurrection power especially through the prophets, and this is why the spirit of intimidation has come to attempt to silence My prophets and cause them to withdraw and go into hiding in fear, so they do not move further into this place of carrying My resurrection power like never before.

      "But I decree today, that this spirit of intimidation will flee as the power of My Spirit comes now upon My prophets and brings a shaking and shakes off the fear, the lies of death, the foreboding, the darkness and infuses them with strength and boldness."

      "Prophets of My heart, in this new land of inheritance, awaits you a new level of boldness and faith in the power of My spoken Word, My protection and My fire. Arise! Arise! Arise and do not fear. For I am with you, I go with you and I go before you. Shake off the fear by the decree of My Word and know that the land of inheritance awaiting you is filled with greater joy in partnering with Me to see My glory and kingdom displayed. There has been great pressing, but my prophets, you will now carry new wine and power in Me."

      It's time. It's time for you to arise. Stand! Stand! Stand! For a new land of inheritance awaits you, and you will be left in awe and wonder of the signs, wonders, miracles and major displays of My power that will manifest at the 

      "My prophets I am inviting you in the library of heaven to read and see the new blueprint decrees of My heart over cities and nations in this new era. For I will show you with greater accuracy and clarity the decrees of My heart over cities and nations that will set them alight with the fire of My love and see My glory and power displayed. For I decree as you seek My heart, seeking not your own agenda or name in lights, but truly seek to know My heart, I am now releasing greater secrets of blueprint decrees of wisdom and revelation for cities and nations to bring major transformation by the power of My Spirit. For I am moving those who are seeking My heart, My prophets who are in the secret place to hear My heart into greater increase and manifestation of their governmental authority. The enemy is fighting this, but he will not prevail. For I decree that you, My prophets will decree the blueprint decrees over cities and nations that will suddenly expose the works of darkness and bring significant breakthrough, shifts and demonstrations of My truth and glory that will bring monumental shifts. It's time!"

      "You are not defeated, My prophets, you are victorious in Me, and you will see my manifested victory in and through your lives like never before. Don't give in to this spirit of intimidation, it's come to steal, but before you is not the lies that this spirit speaks, but life, increase and a major increase of seeing My power moving through you as you decree My Word. Stand!

       

      Culled : Charisma Magazine

      Lana Vawser
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