The Journey 87: Transformation in my family life
Read: 1 Samuel 1
Emotional Profile: The magazine “Newsweek” dated February 27– March 5, 2012 has an interesting article on the topic that deals with science and psychology. It talks about an “ Emotional Profile” The author says that as each individual is unique, each person also has a unique way of expressing emotions which can be called as the emotional style or the emotional profile of the person. This style or profile is the constellation of reactions and response, that differ from person to person in kind, intensity and duration. This means that each individual just as he/she is unique will also have a unique emotional profile, a unique way of expressing emotions. Tears is one of the strongest emotions that is expressed by individuals. But tears are normally misunderstood. In the Indian context, it may be ok if a woman cries but “not ok” if the male sheds tears as it may be viewed as a sign of weakness. On a personal note, being a very sensitive person, tears come automatically in my eyes, hence I feel it is ok for me to cry if I am upset or if I feel I need to cry. But as the article in the Newsweek said each of us has a unique way of expressing emotions whenever we go through different contrasting experiences. For a Christian what does tears show or express? A sign of weakness or strength?
This week we are meditating on the theme “Transformation in our Family life” based on the family life of Elkanah and Hannah in 1 Samuel 1. Here is a couple who sticks together in crisis, but even when the Elkanah show “Intentional” way of strengthening his relationship with his wife Hannah, Hannah is still devastated. The reason for her devastation is that she is childless and according to the concept among the Jews ‘ that is because the Lord had closed her womb’. It is in such a context of devastation and crisis that we find the unique emotional profile of Hannah. She goes to the temple and in bitterness she prays to the Lord with tears [v:10]. The way she expresses her emotions in the temple seems to be very deceptive to Eli the priest, who thought that she was drunk. But when Eli confronts her, that is when Hannah confides in him the crisis that she is going through and the tears of remedy is what she feels is her only hope in life. Here is a woman who expressed herself in tears in the sight of God, she has no qualms to express her anguish before the Lord. The word of God says, that the Lord answered her tears and she had a son whom she named “Samuel”. Every family may go through crisis that may be unique or may be similar to what other families also face. But when crisis comes, our unique emotional profile also come into the picture. There are some who may take a strong posture, while some goes into a depression mode. The result of all these stance is that suddenly you may find family members during crisis, fighting with each other or expressing emotions by wailing and crying, in front of other family members. Here is Hannah who teaches us that tears are powerful, where?- In the sight of God. She teaches us to shed tears in the sight of God, to express unto the Lord our pain, our anguish, our crisis and also submitting ourselves through the expression of tears “Lord let your will be done in my life”. That is what tears should lead to.
Ready to cry? Cry before the Lord……..
Let us Pray: God you have given us different emotions. We thank you that each of us has a unique way of expressing our emotions. Thank you for the gift of tears. Help us to pour our anguish and our pain through our tears on to your feet. Amen