Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | November 12, 2014

How do You Feel and What do You Know? by David Bower

How do You Feel About Things?

Feelings or emotions are important to all of us and are a constant factor in our lives; they impact the way we see both circumstances and people. The challenge is our feelings are very fragile; good feelings can turn bad and bad feelings can turn good in the blink of an eye. I’m sure that each of us have experienced times when our feelings were almost instantaneously reversed by something we saw or heard.

For better or for worse, I’m really not sure which it is, I’m a very emotional person; many things can bring tears to my eyes but then on the other hand I smile and laugh quickly as well. There have definitely been times when I wished I could turn that off but have yet to find an on/off switch on which I can depend.

As a result I have to watch myself and, on occasion, try to control my emotions as best I can. There are songs and hymns that almost always reduce me to tears by the impact they have on my feelings; there are sections of the Bible that are difficult for me to teach because of their impact on my emotions. There was more than one time I had to bow my head and struggle to regain my composure as I taught on the crucifixion of our Lord; it was times like that I wished I could find that on/off switch.

A Good Place for Feelings and Emotions

Feelings and emotions have an important place in our relationships with others; among family and friends, feelings of loving concern are appropriate and necessary. We might go so far as to say they are the glue that holds it all together. When asked about the greatest commandment, the Lord replied in Matthew 22:37-40:

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

To me that is a fascinating response, the first word out of our Lord’s mouth was love, an emotion, a feeling. We read in 1 John 4:8, “8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” Since we have been created in the image of God then love should be a natural part of our very being.

Unfortunately there is the problem of spiritual death but once that has been dealt with by receiving Christ as Savior then the doorway to a life filled with love has been opened. The opportunity to live a Spirit led life is available to God’s children and the Spirit led life starts with love:

“22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23

Is There a Place Where Feelings Should not be Trusted?

We have all heard, read, or witnessed many things having to do with the experiences people have had as they lived life as Christians.

As an online missionary for Global Media Outreach I receive letters from people all over the world as they face the daily challenges of life as Christians. One common denominator in the lives of many of the people I encounter has to do with their feelings; they tell me of a problem involving their feelings about life and the Lord.

I’m sure you too have heard many of the same expressions of concern about how they feel like God doesn’t love them anymore, or feel like God has abandoned them, or feel like God isn’t listening to them because He won’t do what they ask of Him, the variations are almost endless.

In situations like this our feelings can become a tool of Satan, that which was given to us by God can be twisted by fear and doubt to become a destructive force in our lives if we let it.

A Faith Based on Knowledge

This is nowhere truer than in the study of the Bible; time after time the Bible tells us what we need to know in order to live a successful Christian life. One of the interesting things I’ve observed in the Bible are the many, many references to knowing and knowledge.

In those sections of the Bible devoted to the deeper doctrines of God, sin, salvation, eternity, the future and the Christian life the idea is to operate on the basis of what you know to be true from the Bible, not on the basis of how you feel about it.

Paul, who is known for writing about the deeper things never, to the best of my knowledge, says one word about how we should feel about these doctrines but focuses exclusively on what we know to be true because it is written down in the Bible; “and we know” is the mantra, how we feel is a non-starter.

“28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.” Romans 8:28-30


Responses

  1. Yay -praise the LORD! Thank you for all your encouraging words, David!

    Like

  2. […] Source: How do You Feel and What do You Know? by David Bower […]

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  3. I loved this post. It’s such a simple reminder but it’s so true! Now I’ll always notice where the Bible points to our knowledge of things and I’ll be reminded that I can know it is true even when I don’t feel it. Thank you!

    Like

    • Beloved Emily,

      You are a big part of the reason I write this blog in the first place; thank you for your encouraging comment and your acknowledgement of this important truth.

      Grandpa David

      Like

      • thank you brother David for the post,it is real encouraging and a very special training to me and my church here.God bless you.

        Like

      • Dear Kennedy,
        I’m delighted the Lord has used that message to bless you.
        David

        Like


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