Feel All the Feels – Then Resolve to Do what is Right Anyway

Updated: Sep 1, 2021

Part 3 in the Honoring God During Divorce series.


Navigating the divorce process without compounding the sinfulness of the situation is challenging but not impossible (Matt. 19:26). We have already discussed the importance of gathering your prayer warriors to intercede for you and any child(ren) involved (see Gather the Troops).


Extreme emotional reactions are to be expected. You may experience them as volatile, an avalanche of overwhelming feelings that you seemingly cannot escape, or numbness that robs you of all emotions, good or bad.


Emotions are God-given. They can provide critical pieces of information unavailable to your logical mind. They should not be suppressed nor given the power to determine your course of action. “He who has no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down and without walls” (Pro. 25:28).


Now, let’s talk strategy for ruling over your spirit by keeping your emotions in check: seeking wise counsel and guarding your heart and mind.


There are two types of counsel necessary during a divorce.

  1. An excellent attorney who can and will execute their duties fearlessly while allowing you to maintain your integrity. In other words, if God leads you to do something that runs contrary to their advice, they will concede. Their goal is to win a court case; yours is to honor God, bringing lasting victory (Ps. 37:37-40).

Even in the most amicable of divorces, an attorney is necessary. The hallmark of divorce is a hardened heart (Matt. 19:8). In other words, your spouse is no longer looking out for your best interest. If they were, you would be on the road to reconciliation, not divorce.


2. Godly men and women who can help you maintain your focus on honoring God. These are

brothers and sisters in Christ who do have your best interest at heart and realize that an earthly victory does not compare to an eternal one. They will hold you accountable, provide wisdom from their own experience, and help you think through the implications of your words and deeds.


Most often, we believe our way is the right way. Getting wise counsel can help us see the error of our ways before we are dealing with the fallout from a poor choice (Pro. 12:15). If you enter into this spiritual war without godly counsel, you will fall (Pro. 11:14), but. “by wise counsel you can wage your war, and in an abundance of counselors, there is victory and safety” (Pro. 24:6).


Guarding your heart and your mind


Thoughts and emotions form a feedback loop. In other words, they exert bi-directional influence. The emotional hub of the brain, the limbic system, is pre-verbal and non-logical. The more “logical” executive functions (forethought and planning, working memory, impulse control, and problem-solving) are in the frontal lobe.


Changing our thoughts is much easier than changing our emotions since they are pre-verbal. I heard once that trying to change your emotions was like trying to ride an elephant. Everything is great as long as the elephant cooperates; once it stops cooperating, you’re just along for the wild ride. Yet, by changing our thoughts, our emotions will change.


God has given us the tools to manage our thoughts and, thereby, our emotions. We take every thought captive and make them obedient to Christ, i.e., bring them in alignment with the Truth of His Word (2 Cor. 10:5). How? By thinking things that are true, honorable, just, pure, loving, kind, gracious, virtuous, and excellent (Phil. 4:8). Are you struggling to find those things in the midst of your divorce? God is all of those things. Think of Him, offer a sacrifice of praise (Heb. 13:15).


Be careful of the stories you tell yourself about your experience. They will become your reality. You may have been victimized – you are not a victim (Rom. 8:37). It is not fair/right/just/insert-your-adjective-here, but God will use it for your good (Rom. 8:28-29).


Guard your heart (Pro. 4:23).


Guard your mind (Isa. 26:3).


For personalized support, schedule an appointment. In the future, we will explore the following steps to success:

· Let God be Your Vindicator (Ex. 14:14, Rom. 12:19)

· Protect Your Child(ren) (I Kings 3:16-28)

· Trust God (I Thes. 5:24, Rev. 19:11)


Angela W. Startz, MAHSC, CCLC

Called2Rise LLC

HopeWorks Counseling



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