“A fool always loses his temper, but a wise man holds it back.” -Proverbs 29:11 (NASB)

Have you ever gotten hijacked by your emotions? During the first few years of my marriage, I had difficulty controlling my emotions because my husband and I were opposite. He’s an introvert, and I’m an extrovert. We also come from very different cultural backgrounds. Our differences include how we think, speak, and function. All this made me go crazy by letting my emotions get the best of me. The things that came out of me shocked me; I blamed the devil and tried to cast the devil out of me. I felt defeated and thought, “How can I continue to do God’s work if I keep fighting like this?” Then, God led me to Cain’s story in Genesis 4:1-7. In this story, Cain and Abel both brought offerings to the Lord, but only Abel’s offering was accepted. Cain got offended by this, and it caused him to look dejected. Then God asked him, “Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; its desire is for you, but you must master it.” But Cain didn’t heed God’s warning and let his anger control him, eventually killing his brother.

After reading this, I realized my responsibility was to master my emotions. It wasn’t the devil’s fault; if I didn’t master my feelings, they would master me because sin was crouching at the door, waiting to eat me up. The question is, “How do we control this?” God gave us a solution in the story when He asked Cain the “why” questions. When I began asking myself, “Why am I thinking this?” And “Why am I experiencing this emotion?” I became more aware of myself, and then I could identify the root of my problem. I began to apply the truth, which helped me to learn to control the negative emotions in my life.

Emotions are one of the greatest gifts God has given us; without them, our lives would be robotic and meaningless. Emotions are great tools for building relationships and can prevent us from falling into danger, but they can also function as a signal that indicates there may be a problem in our lives. Take advantage of your emotions and let them teach you what to do next instead of letting them control your life. Once you allow emotions to run your life, they will open the door to disaster and destruction. Know that you have the Holy Spirit in you, and with His help, you will be able to control every negative emotion in your life. Don’t let emotions control you or weigh you down; instead, lean into the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. 

Anh Powers