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Christian Counseling - Are You Desperate to Reignite Emotions in a Relationship?

Being "head over heels" in love is the or at least one of the most potent emotions in life. A parallel of this is experienced by many in their early relationship with God. The initial connection often leads to an astounding awakening to newness of life, which carries a person for about 17 months (the life of the "love hormone"--oxytocine).  All the emotions of one's being are electrified and sustain the connection as the relationship develops roots. Beyond this simplistic understanding, this life-giving process is as wonderful as it is mysterious.

What lovers, very close friends, parents with newborns and newly converted Christians often experience after the early relational euphoria is a slow-paced, but significant letdown. People languish and pine for days of old when wondrous, comforting feelings kept the relational bond strong and sure. The sense of loss and grief are significant. They question if the relationship can ever be the same without the breathtaking fireworks of those profound and abundant feelings. Many spend years searching for ways to reignite those unmatched feelings of connection until, at some point, they understand they cannot and never will. Most feel guilty or blame the other for the emotional loss. They slip into despair, inactivity and ask if the experience was real or true because it did not last. I have witnessed numerous disheartened people who then abandon the relationships. Not infrequently, Christians wonder why God lets this happen and some even ponder whether or not He exists.

Yet, I believe this is God's design, and, of course, He has a purpose(s). When we are no longer living for or moved by powerful feelings how will we act? Without the motivating feelings we see with depth and clarity what else exists in our hearts. When the wasteful search for resurrecting the strong emotional connection with God or another person is abandoned we are then open to the next phase of relational and spiritual development--relying on our own individual convictions and integrity. Admittedly, this is a very tough transition that is less impressive than living by feelings, from a human viewpoint. From God's view, He sees this person as serious-minded about living righteously, stable and more trustworthy because emotions can suddenly shift and change, mature, and ready for more responsibility, power and challenges. In the end, God is pleased with the person who learns to thrive in this, the highest spiritual state of human living.

Living by conviction and integrity and not feelings surprisingly creates new feelings of self-confidence, more healthy trust in oneself, joy in the relationship, contentment and security in believing one can go the distance of walking with God or another for life.

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