Sunday, 08 November 2015 20:11

The Emotional Juggling Act

Written by  Paster Kemi Searcy
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Women are often told that we are “too emotional.” In response, we often fall into the trap of juggling our emotional life around a fast-paced, dogmatic society that praises sensitivity one day and stoicism the next.

        How can we stop juggling something that clearly we were created to use to benefit the world? Let’s look at a true situation from the “Reality Bible.”


Genesis 29 showcases two emotional jugglers, Leah and Rachel. When handsome Jacob came looking for a wife, they both imagined the possibility of marriage. Jacob fell in love with Rachel. Leah must have experienced an emotional juggle in order to love her sister, while simultaneously envying Rachel’s relationship with Jacob. Rachel must have also juggled conflicting emotions: pity for Leah, knowing Leah as the oldest sister should have been the first to wed, and the ecstasy of young love. Jacob worked seven years for Rachel’s father in order to pay the “bride price” for her hand.


Finally, the date of the marriage was set. Jacob was ecstatic at finally securing his beloved Rachel as his wife. Can you imagine the sisters preparing food for the guests, helping each other dress, and…Leah wishing she was Rachel, while Rachel tiptoed around Leah, trying not to be overly excited? Then, right before the wedding, the sisters received some disconcerting instructions from their father.


As was the custom, the bride was heavily veiled and as the festivities went late into the night, the couple went off to the bridal chamber in the dark. Jacob woke up from his matrimonial bed to find that he had not married his beloved Rachel, but Leah. I can hardly imagine what Rachel was feeling, having been told to keep silent while she watched Jacob take her sister as his bride. And Leah’s emotional pendulum swung from elation at the thought of being first to marry, to sorrow for the price Rachel paid for such trickery.


Jacob duly confronted the girls’ father. Leah watched as her husband argued that she was not the one he wanted. Even though she could empathize with Jacob under the circumstances, she was hurt nonetheless. He did not want her, but she loved him regardless.


As a compromise, Rachel was given to Jacob as a second wife, a mere week after Leah’s own wedding day. Finally Jacob had his true love. As his devotion to Rachel grew, so did his disdain for Leah.


For many years Leah juggled through her emotional scars and wounds. Should she be angry with Jacob? Was it his fault? Maybe she should be furious with Rachel—the beautiful one, the loved one, the wanted one.


Genesis 29:31 tells us, “Now the Lord saw that Leah was unloved, and He opened her womb but Rachel was barren. Leah conceived son number one and named him Rueben, for she said the Lord has seen my affliction, surely now my husband will love me.”


Leah named her son because she wanted Jacob to return the emotion she had for him. In fact, Leah named her next three sons because of her need. She named her second son Simeon, which means the Lord has heard that I am unloved. Her third son she called Levi, meaning again my husband will become attached to me. Leah named her fourth son Judah, for she said, this time I will praise the Lord. It seems that Leah may have finally realized the Lord was giving her the affection she craved from Jacob.


God, in His infinite wisdom, created me to be a woman. Part of the package that makes me female is my emotional strength. I am secure in knowing that God sees my emotions as great assets for His glory. Expressing those emotions appropriately, with God’s timing will take a lifetime to learn.


Like Leah, we were created to incubate and to aid life; that is the purpose of our womb. In Greek, womb is translated as meah, meaning sympathy, compassion, bowels of mercy. Our wombs are seats of compassion so that we can emote like none other.


When the love we give wholeheartedly is not reciprocated or when relationships go bad, it may be difficult for us to move forward. Our wounds run very deep because of our emotional disposition. This is often where the juggling begins. We struggle between what we feel inside, and what we must project. We juggle between staying positive, but also how to forgive and let go. Such was the case of Leah.


In Psalm 23, we see God as the restorer of our souls, and a healer of broken spirits. He knows about our troubles and, like Leah, He hears our cries and desires to bless us.

Surrender all offenses at the feet of the cross. Ask the Lord to heal your heart and leave the juggling to the circus clowns!



Last modified on Monday, 09 November 2015 14:16

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