“For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15
While attending a mid-week Bible Study, a gentleman said, “Temperance is evenness of emotions.” I was immediately intrigued. I’ve always viewed temperance as being self-controlled. Not eating the whole cake. Not watching the entire movie marathon. Not talking too much. Not slapping my neighbor. I always saw it as being able to control my outward actions, but never had I considered that temperance had anything to do with my emotions. It was then that God began to speak to me through His Word, letting me know that if I was going to fulfill every detail of His divine purpose for my life, I would have to learn to manage my emotions. And in order to manage my emotions, I would first have to confront them.
In my life, I didn’t think real believers ever got angry, felt afraid, lonely or depressed. I saw these as fleshly responses. So anytime I felt a strong negative emotion, I wouldn’t know how to handle it, so I stuffed it and tried to ignore it. Because after all Christians are always loving and compassionate all the time. But the Holy Spirit began to help me see the emotional side of God. I learned that God is slow to anger, which reveals He does get angry, but He doesn’t stay mad. Jesus felt lonely, but He knew God the Father was with Him. Holy Spirit is grieved when we’re disobedient, but it doesn’t change His love for us. Nor does our feelings change who we are in Christ! With God’s help we can learn to manage our emotions and operate in a degree of levelheadedness and temperance.
Prayer: Father God, I thank You for speaking directly into my heart. I don’t feel strong right now, but I know You are my strength. I don’t understand many things I’m facing, but I know you have a plan. I feel angry and frustrated, but I know you are with me to help me confront these feelings and do the right thing no matter what. You are my God and You made me. And even though I feel the way I feel, I surrender my emotions to You. I yield to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
(Read Hebrews 4:14-16; Genesis 1:27; Philippians 1:6)