“There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.” 1 John 4:18
It was June 2017, Moravian Falls NC. I remember like if it was yesterday, I was given a necklace with the key to unlock love, along with this key a prophetic word, “God is going to unlock your heart to love like never before, you must remember that when your heart is open to love it will also be open to other emotions, you don’t have to be afraid because God will teach you what to do with pain.”
I swiftly became astonished because I lived a life where I was taught that emotions were evil and were not to be trusted. I believed that I could not show any type of vulnerability because it was for the weak, and the weak will not make it through this tough life. Also, I believed the lie that if I allowed myself to feel negative emotions God was not going to be happy with me or that I was not a good leader.
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Can anyone relate?
If you are like me, and your desire is to live a wholehearted life, my goal in this article is to walk you through how to deal with negative emotions in a healthy way. I welcome you to this amazing journey because you deserve to experience the fullness of love that God has for you on this earth.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Anger, Sad, fear, resentment, frustration, anxiety, etc..
Let me begin by stating that you are allowed to feel, but often you may condemn such emotions because they feel out of your control, when in reality it is your heart screaming for help. Negative emotions is your heart trying to communicate that there is unresolved pain, your soul is yearning for you to tend the garden of your heart.
Related QUIZ: Are You Carrying Emotional Baggage?
There are two main reactions that I see individuals having when in face with such emotions, I call it “survival mode”.
- Numb and shove deep in your heart, pretend it is not there.
- The common “new age technique” that requires for you to change the negative emotion by repeating a positive emotion 6 times. Or if you are a Christian you probably found yourself quoting a scripture until you are blue in the face.
Even though Survival mode may work temporarily, if your heart needs healing from past experiences and traumas you may need to dig deeper. When your heart becomes under pressure and you are faced with pain, these emotions will come out again. These common techniques are like putting a bandage on a wound without treating it.
These common techniques are like putting a bandage on a wound without treating it.
There is not a quick fix, some pain will be healed in one day and others will take years, but the good news is that the Holy Spirit is the best healer you could ever have, he is tender to go a deep as you allow him to go, and he will never veto your free will.
He is not afraid of our mess and he will be there as long as it takes. The invitation is to go deeper into a relationship with the Holy Spirit, and learn how to hear his voice.
Related QUIZ: Do you know how to receive love?
How to Tend to Your Heart
How do you tend the garden of your heart in the midst of pain:
- Release Love to yourself: We can never be healed from pain if we don’t confront it. Learn to accept the emotion and be kind to yourself. Do not shame the emotion. Be patient and kind to your heart.
- Communication: Ask God to reveal why you are feeling “negative emotion”. Ask him; what are the lies that you are believing and what is the truth. Remember that God’s truth will always line up with Love and freedom even through correction “For the Lord disciplines the one he loves” Hebrew 12:6
- Community: Find people you can run with along the journey, people who speak truth and who will help you remove the foxes out of your life.
- No Striving: When we enter in the presence of God there is rest even in the midst of pain. I often see that in the healing season some people get so intense that they forget to enjoy life in the midst. It is good to spend time in your room processing, but sometimes it is good to go out and enjoy life. In my seasons of healing, I love spending time with my funny friends, laughter is medicine for the soul.
In conclusion, it is not black and white, but as we enter into relationship with the Holy Spirit we learn to hear his voice, remain in his love and in that place there is healing and freedom.