When we hide our emotional baggage, we often become phony and problematic in our relationships. I define baggage as negativity inside of us that we’ve allowed to grow. Not only does this affect our lives, but it also affects the lives of others. We cannot help but have a bad attitude when we have emotional issues that we do not deal with properly. We may be holding on to past hurts and offenses, and instead of bringing our issues to God so that He can show us how to handle them, we try to handle them on our own. Usually, our handling of those issues equates to ignoring them completely. Without God’s help, our emotional problems become worse over time, and ultimately, they become burdensome to everyone we come in contact with.

To begin the process of getting rid of our emotional issues, it is important to allow the Holy Spirit to speak to us and strengthen us where we are weak. Then we can begin to prosper in our souls, which is the foundation for true prosperity in every area of our lives (3 John 1:2). Another important part of the process is having the courage to look within so we can locate the root cause. Finding the root cause of our emotional issues takes time, and it begins with being honest with ourselves, God, and others.

Having the courage to look within, taking off the masks, and humbling ourselves before God are processes we should embrace if we are going to be authentic Christians. Here are several ways you can begin to look within and deal with your issues as they arise.
  1. Get to the root of the problem. If you have been offended or hurt, deal with it. Tell God all about it. Ask Him to show you the truth about the matter and how you should respond to it. Then do what He tells you to do.
  2. Confess your faults one to another (Phil. 2:4, AMP). Do not be afraid to get help from a mature Christian advisor. An experienced advisor can help you sort through the difficult areas of your life that you are not dealing with effectively.  
  3. Guard your heart. Begin to watch what you hear, speak, and see. Read and study the Word and allow it to change your thinking.
  4. Continue to ask yourself, Why do I do what I do? In other words, examine your motives each day.
  5. Refuse to live in people bondage. Also, refuse to have the attitude that you don’t need anyone, or you don’t care about anyone.
  6. Begin to cultivate a lifestyle of prayer. When we do not have an authentic relationship with God, we begin to allow issues to build up over time. Our repressed emotions will begin to seep out, and others see it in our behavior. However, to deal with our emotional issues as they arise, we can begin a lifestyle of prayer in which we are completely honest and open with God.
When you first begin this process, you may discover that you have more baggage than you thought. You may feel overwhelmed at first; however, no matter how messy things are inside, God wants to heal you. He specializes in the human heart, and there is no issue too great for Him to resolve.  Becoming an authentic Christian is a process that will take time. However, transformation will take place, and it will not be too long before you are yielding to His grace and embracing your new identity in Christ. Decide today to look within, and never be the same again!

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