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Why Bottling Up Emotions Kills Spiritual Growth

Posted on November 14th, 2023

For the first 17 years of my Christian life, my emotional life was completely divorced from my spiritual life.  Or so I thought.

When sadness, anger, or disappointment surfaced from my soul, I did not see them as gifts. As a leader, I saw my emotions as interruptions to “my real work” – moving the church forward and reaching the lost!

As a result, I was not present with myself, with God, or with others. I saw my sadness as something to be overcome through prayer and Scripture. I would declare, “the joy of the Lord is my strength!” while ignoring the deep cries of my heart.

The truth is that emotions never die. They are only buried alive. They always resurface, leaking into other parts of our lives and relationships. 

It took a work of God for this to change in my life and marriage. When my wife Geri and I discovered the permission to explore our emotional life, it was like opening up a dam. The world went from black and white to color almost overnight.

Emotionally healthy leaders see their emotions as invitations, not obstacles to the mission of God.

The fruit of this journey leads to less anxiety and more freedom in our lives, leadership, and relationships.

In today’s podcast episode, my wife Geri and I share more about the skill of emotional discovery we call “Explore the Iceberg” in Emotionally Healthy Relationships.

Bottom line, your emotional life is a matter of life and death!

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