Emotions have been devalued and mistrusted in the Evangelical world. After a thirty year career of treating Christians with mental illnesses, I have seen that emotions are crucial to life. Even as Jeremiah describes the heart as deceitful, emotions warn us of danger, connect us to joy, and direct us to love. They teach us what we like and what we don’t like, defining our identity and our God-given specialness, drawing us to relationship. Feelings are the language of the Spirit, and are a key to our spiritual life. This is why illnesses that disrupt emotions are so disabling. Mental illnesses are destructive emotionally, relationally and spiritually. When the Church and its believers can understand and embrace their own emotions, they will be released to grow in themselves, with others, and with God.

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