I’m an atmosphere shifter.
Typically, when I enter a room I bring A LOT of energy with me. I know that I’m called and gifted to shift an atmosphere to a place of hope, freedom and joy. But the other side of this responsibility is that I also feel strongly and easily absorb other people’s energy. I’ve leaned that it’st very important for me to identify which feelings belong to whom and what I’m contributing. This super-power can be used for good…but it also can be detrimental!
At the theatre where I worked for many years, we had a saying,
“please be responsible for the energy you bring into this room.”
I’m sure you can imagine how temperamental the emotional temperature could become when a group of highly creative and “emotionally available” people all converge in a room. Let’s be honest, actors are not always known for being shiny, happy people! Hello, dark and brooding! But they are amazing people. Actors are trained to lay down their own lives and emotional state to put on a character’s life and take an emotional journey for the sake of the audience’s experience. It’s thrilling, really.
It’s been a process to learn how to use this gifting for good instead of contributing to the chaos, turmoil, and tension of a room without knowing it. Or even worse, oozing my negative or insecure feelings all over an unassuming room.
As we heal and grow, it’s easier to recognize where our feelings are coming from and what to do with them. I love the saying,
feelings are real but they aren’t always true.
RIGHT?! Our feelings are real, but when we let them dictate our reactions or even the way we treat others, it can get messy real quick. They are real but they aren’t necessarily true. You may feel alone or unloved, but the truth is you are surrounded by people who do love you. The enemy wants you to dwell on the feelings and be blinded to reality. You may feel unappreciated, but you are valued and loved! The enemy wins when you believe the feelings and remain blinded to the truth.
But here’s another one for you,
control is of the enemy, but self control is a fruit of the Spirit.
Control is rooted in fear and ultimately leads to the wounding of others. But self control is a gift that glorifies God and honors others.
Recently, l was away with my team at a staff retreat. It was a fantastic time of bonding, planning, and much needed connection. But it was also a high stakes gathering. We had an agenda, and with 10 of us in a four bedroom house for two days, I found myself losing it a bit. Not because I was unhappy, but because I was doing my best to manage my enthusiasm, guard my emotional well, and not absorb everyone else’s emotional contributions.
By the end of the second day, I found myself drowning in a wave of negative thoughts and feelings. My mind was inundated with thoughts that were so self-absorbed and spiraling me into a pit of bitterness and victimization. Suddenly, from the vantage point of my feelings, everyone was against me and the world around me was out to hurt me. LIES!
I certainly wasn’t contributing to the JOY in the room!
I excused myself and headed to the bathroom. Sitting on the toilet in a tiny bathroom, tears streaming down my face, I began to talk to myself.
STAND. DOWN. IN JESUS NAME!”
I needed to tell my worked up flesh to come under the authority of the truth. Telling my offended and irrational flesh, out loud, to STAND DOWN helped jolt me out of the pit of muck. I began to agree with the Holy Spirit and exercise SELF-CONTROL. By commanding my flesh to STAND DOWN, I stopped the spiral of negativity and could then declare what I know to be true. This is what it means to take all thoughts (and feelings) captive.
There are times when we need to tell ourselves to STAND DOWN. During the chaotic, highly charged, and emotional moments or seasons in our lives, we can maintain our JOY and be effective in shifting the atmosphere to one of joy and hope by partnering with the Holy Spirit and exercising self-control.
I bless you with self-control as you get to know your power to effect the world around you. I bless you, Joy Bringer, to release JOY in every atmosphere.