Over this past week I almost quit writing. I sat down to work on another post and felt so discouraged that I could not write. My mind seemed to be filled with a swarm of angry bees. Everyone of those bees contained some type of distracting thought. I felt confused, unfocused, and overall I did not believe in myself or trust in God.
By the time I actually had the ability to write anything, I finished about three sentences. In the end, I closed my computer and gave up. I didn’t know if I would ever write again. I can honestly say that the devil was using my emotions against me. Everything in my life that felt wrong was running non-stop through my mind. It broke down my faith and confidence in Christ.
Obviously, I got through the discouragement because you are reading this right now. Dark moments like these remind me of a favorite verse of mine. I think I’ve quoted it before in previous posts. It is Job 23:10, “God knows where we are at. He comprehends our pain. There is nothing he can not understand about it. So, even though we must suffer remember we are being refined into gold.” This scripture is fact, but for some reason the other day I could only pay attention to my feelings and not on God’s truth.
It reminded me of an old illustration about faith.
There is a narrow bridge made of gritty old rope. One slip up and a person would fall straight down into the chasm below, but on the other side of the bridge is a beautiful kingdom. Everyone there is celebrating, cheering, and there is no pain.
Three men approach the bridge and see the kingdom on the other side. Their names are Fact, Faith, and Feeling. They all agree that they need to cross the bridge, but there is a huge risk that they may fall off. Fact tells Faith, “I’ll go first, but keep your eyes on me.” So, Fact steps out on the bridge and begins to walk across it. Next, Faith follows Fact and keeps his eyes ahead. Feeling brings up the rear of the group.
As long as Faith keeps his eyes on Fact the three men make it safely the bridge and enjoy the rewards of the kingdom. The problem is that Faith likes to look behind at Feeling. When he looks at Feeling, the ropes sway and everyone falls into the chasm.
WHEN IT DOESN’T FEEL RIGHT
If you ever utter the phrase, “It just doesn’t feel right” then you are most likely putting faith in your feelings. It is probably one of the most misguiding things we can do in our lives. It steals away opportunities from God and puts trust in how we feel, not in God. Our feelings can deceive us because we are not perfect.
I’m sure Gideon never felt right about his calling to be a Judge. In fact, Gideon felt so doubtful that God kept on making it worse for him until he changed the direction of his faith. Peter denied Christ three times. I have a gut instinct that tells me it was because his faith was pointed at his feelings.
Don’t misunderstand me, though. Feelings are not a bad thing, but they are not a source for our faith. If something feels good or bad, it doesn’t mean we should ignore it. We just can not rely on how we feel for direction in our lives. No where in the Bible does is say, “have faith in your feelings”. It tells us to have faith in God.
GOD IS FACT
The world would have us believe that science is fact. Theories like Evolution are supposed to be fact, but they are not proven. In medieval times they had scientists that were called, Alchemists. These Alchemists used “science” to turn iron into gold. Of course they never succeeded, but they thought it was possible. Based on modern science it sounds delusional, but back then it seemed completely natural to believe such a thing could take place.
That’s the problem with the world’s definition of fact. Everyday we are told some food is bad for us and then the next day it is good for you. Just a few decades ago there was fears over a second ice age. Now everyone is worried about Global Warming. The bottom line is that no one can be certain of anything except God. God is fact. He never changes and has always been there. No matter how we perceive him, he still loves us and we are in his hands. That is where the core of our faith should be. Putting faith into anything that is not God will turn out to be fruitless.
CROSSING THE BRIDGE
Let’s be honest. All of us are trying to cross that bridge, but it is scary. Sometimes Faith is looking ahead, but Feeling is screaming because he’s so scared. It is almost impossible not to look back in those moments, but our feelings should never transcend what we know to be true; the fact that Jesus Christ died for our sins and has our lives in control.
We will make mistakes and look back on that bridge, but thankfully we are forgiven in these moments. I’ve mentioned in previous posts that nothing is irredeemable through Christ. Keep that idea in mind when your emotions get the better of you.
The beauty of having feelings is that they allow us to experience joy. We are uniquely blessed because we can rejoice that we are saved from sin and will be going to heaven. Sometimes it is hard when we feel pain and loss, but don’t let your faith look back on that bridge. Keep your faith’s eyes forward so you can receive the blessings God has in store for you.
I’ll finish with Romans 5:1, “Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.” As long as you point your faith towards God, your feelings with benefit with a true joy.