• Engage

    How Should We Handle Overwhelming Feelings?

    What is the biblical perspective on how to handle overwhelming feelings? There are healthy and unhealthy ways to do that. The healthy way to deal with strong feelings starts with thinking wisely about feelings in general. Our pastor often says that feelings are real (we do feel them, often intensely), but they’re not reliable (they make terrible indicators of what is true). So we should acknowledge them, but not be led by them. Especially powerful, overwhelming feelings. Allowing yourself to be controlled by your feelings is unwise and immature. The flip side of that is our example of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. No one ever experienced the strength…

  • Engage

    Ups and Downs

    The last month has felt like an emotional roller coaster—reaching exciting heights but plunging down quickly. After experiencing the high of a remarkable mission trip to Kenya, the low of returning to reality in the U.S., and the high of a belated summer vacation on the white sands of Florida, we returned to Texas for the funeral of a beloved family member who had pulled back from our family the past few years. Right now I am hanging on to a short season of calm on the ground, knowing that it may not last long.   As I ponder the events of these few weeks, I am thankful that my…

  • Turner field

    You Are Emotionally Contagious: How you can infect others for good

    We are sitting at Turner Field in Atlanta, watching the Braves take on the Washington Nationals. A batter steps up to the plate, a lanky left-hander, tightly circling his bat. Two nights earlier he hit two home runs out of four times at the plate. Atlanta’s best pitcher eyes him over the rim of his glove, then winds up and throws. The batter pops it up impossibly, third-deck high. We let out a whoop. And everyone around us turns and stares.    We are cheering for Adam LaRoche, son of one of my best friends and first baseman for Washington, surrounded by Brave fans who don’t take too kindly to…