Mangled mess of Christmas lights

By Dave Henning / May 9, 2024

“Now, we nearly all have strings that, even when they’re untangled, we’d still rather forget.  But when they’re untangled, we can work with this thing.  What was just a mangled mess of unusable Christmas lights . . . becomes something beautiful and life-giving and connected and has the hint and promise of connection between us and God and between us and the people we want to love well.”- Jennifer Allen

Jennifer Allen concludes Chapter 13 of Untangle Your Emotions with life-changing adjustments three through five.

3.  Eat smart and drink water.  Certainly, Jennifer admits, it’s no fun to give up the foods you love.  However, unless the foods you love also love you back, in the long run those foods fail to serve you well.  And we need to keep ourselves hydrated.

 4.  Move and get outside.  Even before the pandemic, Jennifer reports, the average American adult sat for more than six hours a day.  So, here’s how Jennifer answers the question regarding what kind of exercise you should be doing.  She quips: “Whatever kind you’ll actually do.”

In fact, Richard Louv coined this term to describe the impact of a lack of contact with the natural world: nature deficit disorder.

5.  Take a nap.  It takes energy to untangle emotions.  Hence, as you start working this process, give yourself some grace.  And if you tire, then go lie down.

In conclusion, Jennifer empathizes, perhaps the pile of stuff that comprises your emotional load looms so large, you feel it’s impossible to chip away at it.  Even if you had sixteen lifetimes to do it.  Even so, the author knows this to be true: We can be healthier than we are today.  By God’s grace, we can be transformed (bolding Jennifer’s).

Of course, Jennifer stresses, emotional healing makes demands.  Above all, even with those demands, she asks, will you come boldly to the discussion?  Jennifer hopes you always will.

Today’s question: What emotions do you see as a mangled mess of unusable Christmas lights?  please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “The aim of the person of faith”

About the author

Dave Henning

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