I am a person who feels deeply. I am not alone. There are others who feel deeply too. When I say feel deeply, I mean we take in information from the outside world and internalize it, almost as if the event(s) happened to us. Sometimes these feelings become overwhelming—causing anxiety, fear, and/or depression. These deeply rooted feelings take hold of us and can happen at inopportune times.
I believe it is these inopportune times that takes these feelings from the blessing they are meant to be to more of a mental illness. I know that God intended for the times of feeling deeply to be a positive, but our lives have become too crazy with other activities, making the deep feelings more like a curse, especially when they take us away from what we need to do—work, family obligations, and recreation.
However, feeling deeply, thinking, praying, meditating, or whatever you want to call it is, in fact, good. It is a blessing. There are moments while I’m sitting alone when a person, usually a person I love, comes to mind. I remember them, my heart swells, tears may flow, and I’m captured by them. It’s the same when I think of my Lord and Savior.
I’m held captive by His words.
I’m held captive by His blessings.
I’m held captive by His desire for my heart; I want my life to be dedicated to him.
Being captivated by Him makes me feel honored that He would entrust so much to me, and, at times, I am overwhelmed by it all.
I didn’t always think deep feelings were a blessing. For too long I believed that these emotional thoughts were a curse, one to run from. I would hide in television, food, chores, busy work, or run to friends and family to fill every moment of my life so I didn’t have to feel. Some people choose drinking, drugs, exercise or work to avoid feeling, let alone feeling deeply. But then I stopped fighting the feelings and fell into a deep hole of depression by thinking too deeply. Maybe you’ve been there. I was nearing the precipice, a place where I was going to be enveloped and spiral so deep that I’d be unable to call for help. However, I received help just in time. An amazing counselor, wise friends, and a dear pastor friend encouraged me to look at my deep emotions differently, as times of blessings. These are times God has set out for me to pray for others, to pray for myself, to pray for my country or the world, or just be with Him.
You, too, can turn deep feelings into a blessing. Compassion and empathy are noble traits the Lord only gives to a few of us. The deep feeling and connection to others who are hurt is a powerful tool for His Kingdom, but it can be a heavy burden to many. Make the choice of what it is to you.
For me, I now carve out time to feel deeply. Then I think deeply about all those people or issues that are weighing heavy on my mind and heart. I do my best to limit the time, so I can get to life’s responsibilities, but I make sure to get it all out. I journal. I talk with wise friends. I pray. I listen to worship music. I take long showers and talk with the Lord. Sometime I get on my knees and pray. I spend time in the quiet (that one is especially hard for me). I go for long walks. Regardless of what I do, I count it as a blessing. I make sure to tell others that my feeling deeply is a blessing because it comes from love. I love deeply. That love/feeling deeply comes from the One who walks with me through everything. It’s a blessing. I am blessed.
I asked the Lord for strength, so people would stop hurting me, so He gave me compassion.