My friend Marc Schelske has written a great book on emotions stemming from his own story of minimizing, devaluing, and suppressing his feelings in the name of spiritual maturity, and I was fortunate enough to receive an advance copy.
Part apologetic for emotions and part handbook, “The Wisdom of Your Heart” (David C. Cook Publishing) is a great resource for pastors, church leaders, counselors, and thoughtful Christians.
Listen, I know that emotions are tricky They can be blamed for many foolish decisions. I believe that “Listen to your heart,” in the way meant by popular culture, is some of the dumbest advice ever given. That being the case, should emotions be ignored as much as possible?
Absolutely not. They are a gift from God, say Schelske. Like our nervous system, they bring both pleasure and pain, and are vital for our wellbeing. The first two sections of “The Wisdom of Your Heart” serve as a compelling apologetic for emotions. This includes looking at God’s emotions.
But maybe you already believe this. Skip to the second half of the book, which is the best practical handbook on emotions I’ve read. It doesn’t simply help the reader understand what they are feeling, but what those feelings mean, what they are pointing to. Did you blow up at your wife over a seemingly benign comment about the trash? Dig deeper, Schelske says. Anger frequently means we feel threatened. Perhaps the anger comes from feeling like your worth as a husband being questioned.
I personally enjoyed reading this book and recommend it to you.