Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Who me? Housebroken?

This past weekend I had the privilege of being the retreat speaker for the women of my church. We journeyed over to a beautiful beach house on the Oregon coast. The view was spectacular, with nothing but a little sand between us and the ocean. Thirty of us gathered together as we learned more about how to tame our emotions. Have you ever wondered if that's even possible?

As women, we have a myriad of emotions to deal with, including those brought on by PMS or peri-menopause. The dictionary defines tame as "reduced from a state of native wildness especially so as to be useful to man." And don't our emotions sometimes make us feel like we're in a state of native wildness? Where we have this primal urge to go running through the jungle (or down your block) screaming at the top of your lungs?

The thesaurus gives other word possibilities such as subdued, submissive, harmless, civilized, and housebroken. Housebroken? That's really not such a bad idea. When you have a puppy or kitten that's not housebroken, what do you end up with? Yep, and we can do the same thing when we're not housebreaking our emotions. We can leave stinky, messy piles of anger or discontent or worry in the corners of our house. Other people may not even be aware of them, but if they spend much time with us, the stench will show up.

We spent time looking at the topics of fear, worry, depression, disappointment, and anger. These all interact and often one leads to the other and we end up in a vicious cycle. It was exciting to remind these women that we always have a choice to make--either going by our feelings or by the truth of God's word.

1 comment:

Robin Johns Grant said...

Since I'm having one of those days today that makes me want to run down the street screaming, I definitely needed to hear this today. I've been working for years on taming those emotions, and God obviously knew I was slipping today. I love the "housebroken" cat and dog analogy. As a matter of fact, if you want to see what a cat with untamed emotions looks like, take a look at my blog from yesterday: http://queenofperseverance.blogspot.com/2008/03/oh-no-not-again.html