This past week, I had been talking with my friend and teacher, Dr. Nabeel Jabbour about the need for maturing believers to be learning how to identify their feelings, and then chose the correct attitudes. This is definitely something that I have been praying about and working on in the past couple of years, and this week the Lord decided to remind me of this truth and give me something to practice on! As soon as I got home from Nabeel's house, my dad was on the phone with the insurance company. Last week they were determining how much settlement they were going to give me for my car, and now they were calling dad to let us know. The news wasn't good. The total amount was only half of what I paid for the car initially and in repairs this past year. From the little bit of looking online that I had done, there was no way I would be able to get another car even close to comparable. I was so disappointed! I also felt a bit cheated since the accident was in no way my fault, and yet I would be paying for it. I went back to the quiet of my room and told the Lord what I was feeling. I never doubted that He would provide in the end, but the feelings of injustice weighed on me. I told Him how I was disappointed, confused, and angry at the insurance company for what was happening. Once I spilled out my heart to Him, I was then able to choose what my attitudes and feelings should be. I could then thank Jesus for this wonderful rental car that I've been able to enjoy the past 2 weeks. I thanked Him for keeping Melinda and me from serious injury, and for the resources to get any medical treatment if we need it. I thanked Him for allowing the accident to happen now, and not later. I thanked Him for the insurance company not giving me enough money, so now I get the chance to see Him work yet again to provide for me.
So many things this week have been reminders to me that I must not "stuff" my emotions, but rather acknowledge my feelings and ask the Lord to make my attitudes and emotions into what pleases Him. How much freedom and joy this brings! I keep thinking of David, and how often He did just that. So many of the Psalms are David pouring His heart out to God in anger, hurt, and confusion. But so many of those Psalms also end in David's proclamation of God's compassion, faithfulness, and loving-kindness. How wonderful it is to be able to freely acknowledge that things in this life sometimes really stink. That situations and people really hurt us and we just want things to be different. Then once we're all through confiding our woes to our Abba, He is the one to renew our faith, reminding us of His truth and promises, and changing our attitudes. Knowing what a compassionate Father I have makes me that much more eager to see what He'll do in me and for me with each new day.