I’ve shared before that the emotional trajectory of any given day (or hour) of my life can look a little like this.
Even if this isn’t your norm, perhaps there has been a day or two…
It seems that lately, many people around me have been facing circumstances that have thrown them for a loop even if usually their emotional life looks more like a merry-go-round than a monster roller coaster. So what do you do with all the Big Feelings?
One of the things I love about Scripture is that it’s so authentic, that often I may be experiencing something or feeling an emotion and one of the Bible people seems to jump off the pages and say “Me too!”
The community of young married couples I shepherd has started a study of David. I’m thinking David might have been a roller coaster kind of guy – a musician, shepherd, warrior, leader, and writer… As part of our study, this week we have agreed to read a Psalm written by David every day, starting with Psalm 3.
I love the Psalms because I feel kind of like a voyeur, peaking over someone’s shoulder, reading their journal. The Psalms are just so dang real!
The Psalms are FULL of All Of The Big Feelings.
Can you say drama???
But the great thing is that the Psalms model how to deal with that drama.
Religiosity may say stuff or deny – don’t admit the messy feelings.
Secularism may say emotion is god – it rules all.
But the Psalms give us a third way to deal with our emotions. In the Psalms we see that we shouldn’t be necessarily celebrating our emotions, or bowing down to them, denying or venting them indiscriminately.
The Psalms give us an example of praying the Big Feelings – pouring them out and processing them with God.
In addition to praying Scripture, whether the Psalms or other books, I try to ask :
- What can I learn about God?
- What can I learn about the person I’m reading about? (positive or negative examples)
- What truths can I apply to myself?
So…Here’s what I see in Psalm 3…
But You, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, the one who lifts my head high. v.3
He prays his fears.
He’s brutally honest – this is not how he “should” pray. He asks for retribution for his enemies (not a model to follow :), but reassuring that God is a safe place).
He reminds himself where his “glory” lies – not in temporary things, but in God. He seeks God’s approval, not the world’s.
“The single most characteristic thing about David is God… The largest part of David’s existence wasn’t David but God” Eugene Peterson
Where is my “glory” today? Who or what am I looking to to be my shield and the one who lifts my head?
If the heart of my identity is in God’s approval I will be secure.
This morning I read Psalm 5.
So what about you? Share some thoughts about your time in God’s Word?