Jim Wilson is the retired director of Community Christian Ministries in Moscow, Idaho. He will be posting regularly, so check back in soon!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Emotions and Expressions of Them

Emotions and Expressions of Them

God has given us, spontaneous expressions of internal emotions. Two of them are tears and laughter. These emotions and expressions can be evoked. A funny story can cause laughter.

“Once there was a dear widow woman who lived alone. One day she was working on a jig-saw puzzle of a rooster. She was getting nowhere. In frustration she called a widower who lived near by. She explained her difficulty and asked him if he would come over and help her. He came over; he looked at the picture on the box and at the pieces and said, 'We will never get a picture of this rooster. Let's sit down and have a cup of tea. After that we will put the cornflakes back in the box!'”

I could also tell a story which would cause sadness and tears. Real events can also cause laughter and tears. Laughter and tears are God's means of relieving pressure, like a valve on a pressure cooker. Shouting and cheering can be expressions of man-made joy like home runs, touchdowns, and soccer goals. Certain types of music (minor key) can cause sadness. Martial music can cause expressions of loyalty. Poetry can cause tears, laughter, and praise.

In my own memory I can recall having tears from the last two stanzas of Jesus the Name High Over All, the fourth stanza of For All the Saints, and John Whittier's The Pipes At Lucknow.

These emotions and expressions may be pleasant but they are not the same as, or substitutes for, the Fruit of the Spirit.

In the Lord Jesus Christ,

Jim Wilson