Emotional Ups & Downs

Life isn’t always easy and emotions don’t always help. Our God-given emotions should be kept in check as followers. We endanger our souls when we allow them to lead. Struggling can be used as an encouraging sign that we are still fighting. If you’re struggling with an area of your life it is a sure sign that you’ve not yet given up.

Ps 42 is such a famous portion of Scripture defining a passion to pursue God in the analogy of a deer panting for water. David was repeatedly addressing emotional highs and lows in his own heart in this portion of Scripture. He never wavered in his faith but was honest about his pain.

Ps 42:1-11 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 4 These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One with shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng. 5 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me?Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. 6 My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar. 7 Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. 8 By day the LORD directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life. 9 I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?” 10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 11 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me?Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. NIV

Moses, Elijah and Jonah are all great men we read about in the Bible. All three had so much in common in regard to their pursuit of God, their amazing leadership and their suicidal thoughts. Moses experienced emotional lows as a result of fatigue and a lack of delegation.Elijah experienced emotional lows as a the result of fear.Jonah experienced emotional lows as the result of disobedience and a lack of understanding of the purpose behind the events in his life.

Clearly David’s struggle didn’t disqualify him. Our struggles don’t have to disqualify us from caring for and ministering to others. In Gen 20:17 Abraham prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech and his wife and his maids, so that they bore children. (NASB) Interestingly this took place after 24 years of waiting for his promise that he and Sarah would have a child. He was still waiting but didn’t let this keep him from praying for this exact need in the lives of others. In his struggle he could have disqualified himself from ministering to others but he didn’t allow his own struggles to define the magnitude of his ministry. Your limitations don’t have to keep you from praying for others.


Ps 126:5 Those who sow in tears will reap with shouts of joy. NIV

Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. NIV


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