About the Author

Jessica Turner is the author of Stretched Too Thin: How Working Moms Can Lose the Guilt, Work Smarter and Thrive, and blogs on The Mom Creative. Every day is a juggling act as she balances working full-time, making memories with her family, photographing the every day and trying to be...

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  1. This chapter really opens up a can of worms — examining our emotions and then yielding them to God in obedience and faith requires holding up a mirror to a lot of the selfishness in my heart. Yuck. I am so thankful for what Holley shared here. I love that she challenged us to guard our heart and that she showed us how the armor described in Eph 6 is useful in this process. This chapter gave me a lot to think about — praying through to reign in my emotions, seeking out “Joshua’s and Caleb’s” to help me choose to walk in faith. I feel like I have some tools now to work through the mess of it all (Thanks, Holley!). Angie is so right — my emotions are way too bossy. I have some work to do.

  2. I just logged on this week, thinking I would be behind…. so thank You, God, for technical glitches =)

  3. This chapter moved mountains for me! If you had simply asked me if I was head or heart, I would have instantly said head. I’m all head. But oh my goodness, I’m HEART! My wardrobe makes sense now…

    I wrote “Worry is a sign that we’re letting our emotions get the best of us.” (Pg 74) down and am carrying that around with me until I get a handle on my emotions. They will not be the boss of me = )

    Beautiful chapter. thank you so much!

  4. This chapter was truly therapeutic for me!! And Angie, you totally hit the nail on the head at the end of the video! I am now trying sooo very hard to not listen ONLY to my emotions (boy do they get me into trouble! lol!). I feel as though it’s been a very bad habit of mine to give in to impatience, annoyance, etc. & I am really trying to break that habit. I finally realized that I have to put MUCH effort into ridding this habit rather than just relying on “wishing it away”…no way, I have to WORK at it! 😉

    Gosh, I am getting so much out of this book & it is at the most perfect time in my life!!
    Thank you, ladies! Have a wonderful week!

  5. This chapter was very difficult for me. I’m currently very discouraged now that I hit my third trimester in this pregnancy. For me there is just this overwhelming fear that I won’t be a good mom. I still carry of lot of emotional baggage from my past. The abuse I endured as a child and the heartbreak associated with some very tragic situations in my life have really taken their toll on my emotional health. Sometimes I just can’t help but wonder what I’d be like if none of that had happened. At times I can’t help but think that perhaps I’d be a better person.

    When I was growing up I was so afraid to express any sort of strong emotion. I locked up all of my feelings inside until they got to a point where they overwhelmed me and I slipped into a constant state of depression. I’ve been making tons of improvements and progress in the past few years, but I’m still not where I want to be.

    I just pray that as I raise my daughter God will help me break free from the negative emotional patterns that I learned from my family. I’m doing my best to completely rely on God to replace them so that I can serve Him fully. I want to be able to feel some positive emotions that I’ve never felt before. I want to feel ecstatic, enthusiastic, and free! I want to find joy in each day and become the princess God created me to be!

    • Kaelynn,

      I’m sorry to hear about the discouragement you are going through at the moment. I can relate to being abuse as a child, as well as the fears of not being a good mom in the future. While I haven’t exactly been the most joyful person lately, I can say that it’s times like these where we just need to KNOW that God is in control, and that if we cry out to Him and seek Him with everything, He will hold us, lead us, and change us into who we need to be in order to do His will. It’s tough, and a long battle as we live in this fallen world. However, one day, we will be eternally joyful with the One who has the power to give us joy even now.

      In Christ’s Love,
      Anna

  6. I have been so blessed by the words shared in this book and in the videos and comments. I am especially thankful for this chapter as I continue to struggle with out-of-control emotions. God has rescued me so many times from the pit of depression but I always seem to get tripped up and fall back in. I become so afraid that He will eventually get tired of having to bail me out and frustrated that I can’t learn to depend on Him more fully. I am clinging to the promises of His Word even though my heart feels numb right now. Thank you for being His messengers of hope and encouragement.

    • Hi Sandee, I can really relate to that wondering whether God could get tired of you; I had that a few years ago where I thought I’d made too many mistakes and God must have had enough, but not true! Can I advise you to go back a chapter in Holley’s book? Maybe think of: “God will get tired of me” as a lie, and replace it with the end of Isaiah 40 – the truth that God doesn’t grow weary. He’ll NEVER get fed up with us ‘cos He loves us too much for that. 🙂

      • Thanks so much for your encouragement Sarah. Going back to the previous chapter is a great idea and I’m going to do it tonight!

  7. I’ll admit, I’m more head like Jessica, but Chapter 4 was very difficult for me because I just didn’t get the charts indicating “In my family it was/was not OK to feel…” I really didn’t get it. In my own family, we actually discussed this list and came to a conclusion that it was OK to feel any and all of those that were listed. It wasn’t in the feeling, but rather in the doing that was important. Reactionary was key. It’s OK to feel any of those things, but then what? What are you going to do about that feeling? What actions will you take to either change to feeling if it’s a negative one, or promote the positive feeling so it can last longer?

    I understand many are influenced by their past and upbringing, of course. But God doesn’t work back there, in the past. It’s the present that he’s concerned with right now, for you and for me. So, trying to find out where it all comes from, for me, is not worthy of my time. I can see how it can be effective to understand how one got to where they are right now, but I say figure out who you are supposed to be today and do it, ask God to give you what you need to be that person. xxoo

  8. woah…What a chapter – and YIKES!!!! I must say again Thank You for this book and the timing of this bookclub…This is my down time and I am thoroughly enjoying the read and being challenged by some of the things that He is revealing to me.

    In my family it was never OK to feel, it took time and it hurt and was not always nice and neat…I never ever saw my mother cry with the exception of the day my dad was buried and that went from silent tears to passing out at his graveside…Tears were not good…I am a stuffer!!!! although my sturdy raincoat is very brightly colored ;)… This chapter has been read over a few times and I am grateful that God is drawing me out of this.

    it is so strange to see me on the pages of this chapter as I always used to navigate the safe realm, but Jesus…He has brought tears of joy and hope, tears of despair and deep hurts, but He has caught them all and does not waste them…How I love Him…

    Amazing chapter – simply amazing!

  9. I love how you class having a passionate approach to life as a strength. Probably love it so much because in the past somebody told me I got passionate about things, and they SUPPOSED that was a good thing (meaning they didn’t really think so!). I guess passion when expressed in the wrong way (as in an outburst of rage or a lack of self-control) could be a weakness, but in general, I think it’s a good quality to have.

    The only part of the chapter I really struggle with is this idea that it’s ok to be angry. I would very strongly disagree with that. I definitely think it’s ok to be honest and share your heart with God and others, but anger is not ok. I know in Ephesians 4:26 it says: “In your anger do not sin”; that’s a quote from the Psalms, but Jesus regularly quoted Old-Testament Scriptures and then gave us a higher standard (E.G. “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery’, but I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart”). I think Paul does a similar thing in Ephesians, because just a few verses later (4:31) it says: “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger”. The standard before was “In your anger do not sin”, but as Christians, we have a higher calling. Galatians 5:19-20 also puts ‘Fits of rage’ as an act of the sinful nature. God’s someone to be reverenced and respected; He wouldn’t want us to be angry with Him! Anytime I’ve expressed anger towards Him, I’ve only lost my sense of peace and of feeling close to Him, so I know it’s not right.

    I still think the book is worth reading though and look forward to chapters 5 and 6!

    • I believe the word anger, like love, has very different meanings in the English language. There are emotions that everyone experiences. It’s how you REACT to those emotions that is the key. Love God, and love others. Those two commands should be present in every emotion we experience and act upon.

  10. This was a hard chapter in some ways. I am starting to realize a little more about myself. Even though I have a health condition, that condition is not to dictate my emotions or how I respond to different things.
    I had some difficulty hearing the video when Angie got serious. Good though.

  11. Another awesome chapter…a few things that I highlighted…
    – Choosing to do what is right in spite of our emotions protects us.
    – Worry is a sign that we’re letting our emotions get the best of us.
    – God has given you a wardrobe of emotions fit for a princess because that’s what you are in his eyes. Wear them royally, with your heart held high, and show the world what it means to be a passionate woman who has the courage to truly experience life and express herself (and the One who knows her heart best) with love and grace through it all.

  12. I wasn’t planning on responding to this chapter because as I was reading, I didn’t really “feel” or “think” anything. As I sit here typing, I know that there were times while reading the chapter that my eyes were opened or God reminded me of a truth. Even still, one of the previous comments made me see how tightly one’s past can hold them down.

    As so many (what a shame), I was abused as a child. Thankfully, I only physically endured a few years of the abuse. However, I feel as though the emotional abuse remains every day of my life. There are times I wonder how my life would be if I never experienced the abuse, and even times where I wonder how it would be if I had endured it up until high school. I have spent countless years working on my past with counselors, friends, God, myself, etc. yet there are days when I feel like all of that work or progress has been erased in a second.

    What happened to a couple of years ago? I was so strong… not just with the past, but with GOD – which is the reason I was able to overcome so much. I was content with who I was, and the life that I had experienced. I realized (and still do) that I was to life my abuser as Christ loves and I sought to act on that love. I was strong… and I wish that strength would last forever. I feel weak now. With every new stage of my life, it seems as though I need to overcome my childhood again and again. I’m exhausted in every possible way, yet I keep holding on – rather, Christ keeps holding on to me… I would have let go so long ago.

    Oh, Father. Precious Jesus. Give me the strength to hold on to You. Give me the joy despite the circumstances of life. You are all I live for. May I be an encouragement and a light to others. May I be strong… only praising Your great name. Thank You for my sisters here. Thank You for the resources you provide. Thank You for the cross. Amen.

  13. Hello beautiful women! I love hearing your hearts and perspectives about this chapter! Praying with and for you and continuing to ponder this subject too…XO

  14. Love LOVE reading all of the different reactions!!
    I’m truly not alone here – in so SO many ways.
    I’m heart, heart, HEART all the way – always have been!! It was SO hard to sit down and look at these lists – because I don’t think that there was ever anyone to tell me what was (or was not) allowed. It was the wild years of “sex, drugs, rock and roll” in Southern CA that I was raised!! In an agnostic home, no less. Each one of us was to stand up to make change – the liberalism of my father’s Dutch Socialism and my mom’s just trying to get by, and I really don’t think that “emotion” was anything more than a momentary reaction. I think that’s why lying, drinking, drugs – all these things were allowed (and even encouraged) in the home. It was a “Just Do It” mentality (or “heart-ality”).
    God’s grace is abundant! OH, how I’ve carried this broken, dirty, wounded heart to Him (again and again). YES!! I want and need NEW clothes, but I want Him to change me on the inside first, again. YES!! He is faithful to change me again and again….and I know it will continue in each season of life. Praise Him!!
    Thanks Holley, for this challenging chapter!! Thanks ladies, for being authentic, and continuing to bring laughter to the hard spots….

  15. What a chapter! I am so glad that God is the maker of emotions, but I allow them to get in the way of the message God wants me to hear. When Holley asked, “Do we rely on our emotions alone? Or do we look into God’s truth and let him tell us what’s real?”, I had to search my heart for the truth. Too often, I allow emotions to cloud the truth. I appreciate the realness of this chapter, and the practicality it has in my life right now.

  16. I struggle with feeling okay when I get angry. Even if I don’t express it, I feel that having anger about something is wrong.