The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.
Psalm 34:18

Life is beautiful, but it can also be painful. In reality, we are all either hurting, healing, or somewhere in between. So when—not if—you find yourself in a valley, what do you do?

Here are three methods of dealing with emotional pain.

First, it’s okay to feel the way you do, but don’t let it become your identity. Your feelings are not bigger than who God created you to be. “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (Ephesians 2:10)

Second, focus on what you know. In no way should we compare our struggles with Christ’s suffering on the cross, but do you think he could have willingly put himself through that kind of humiliation and torture if he was focused on his feelings? No, Christ knew God’s plan, and it was his singular focus until his last breath. We must strive to have the same mentality. “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Psalm 73:26)

And third, remember what you’ve already overcome! It’s not healthy to live in the past, but we can certainly learn from it and remind ourselves how God has already helped us persevere. He has a plan for us (Jeremiah 29:11), and when we learn to rely on Him in every aspect of life, we can accomplish anything (Philippians 4:13). “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Cor 12:9-10)

Healing is a process, but when we refuse to let it define us, focus on God’s plan for our lives, and learn to rely on his love, grace, and mercy, in all things, he will bring us out of the valley.


Today’s author is Mark Henderson. He is the founder and host of The Inspired Legacy Podcast.