HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO … FEEL!!?
There is a well known stigma that all Christians are supposed to be “pansies”. Sensitive, emotional, wavering cry babies that in one breath will laugh and in the next cry at the drop of a hat. On the flip side, our non-believing counterparts can be cool, calm, and collected all with vision and purpose. Why is this so? Was it ALL due to the Sermon on the Mount? Have the Beatitudes … beat out our ATTITUDE? Let it not be so!
“Feeling stuff” is important. As a matter of fact, did you know that most chronically overweight people… have never felt HUNGRY? It has been stated by dietitians, that one of the toughest thing a chronically overweight person has to go through is learning how to WAIT to eat until they begin to feel hungry! They have become so conditioned to eat all the time, that they have completely become conditioned to avoid feeling hunger pains OF ANY KIND. I don’t know about you, but I know quite a few people who work really really hard to NOT feel ANYTHING, and in return- they are FAT with debt, weight, poor relationships, greed and all out fleshly desire. To them “anything goes” and “permanent happiness” is their #1 priority – cause FEELING HURTS TOO MUCH.
ATTITUDE AND AIRPLANES
Did you know that the word “attitude” does not occur even once in the King James Bible? The word is actually a modern word, and this modern word is a good word to describe your “emotional state”, however I believe that the modern day Christian has become so focused on “maintaining a GOOD attitude”, that they have have forgotten that it takes CONSTANT adjustments to our “attitudes” in order for us to get anywhere.
“In aircraft flight dynamics, pitch, roll and yaw angles measure both the absolute attitude angles (relative to the horizon/North) and changes in attitude angles, relative to the equilibrium orientation of the vehicle.”
The attitude of an aircraft plays a major role in WHERE exactly the aircraft will end up. One degree off course- and you could crash into a mountain! Once the aircraft is in the air, it becomes possible to hold the aircrafts attitude steady and consistent. However, if you know anything about operating a vehicle (car, bike, airplane), you understand that trying to maintain a “PERFECT” attitude is impossible and that attitudes can ONLY be maintained BY ADJUSTMENT.
Try it sometime, when you are driving you car- can you ever NOT make minor adjustments in steering? NO! Constantly we are “trying to stay within the lanes”, adjusting the wheel in order to make the car go straight. Today’s focus IS NOT AN EXCUSE FOR US TO BECOME EMOTIONALLY UNSTABLE, it is on the reality of emotions and the recognition that LOVE must become the instrument in which we use to adjust our “ATTITUDES”. Just like an airplane has its main flight control surfaces (ailerons, elevator, rudder, spoilers, flaps…etc), so we too have become fully equipped in Him in order to BEST control our emotional attitudes. God has feelings – God gave us feelings – it is time now to learn how to properly DEAL WITH THEM.
“Jesus wept.” John 11:35
1 CORINTHIANS 13 : AND UNDERSTANDING THE REALITY OF EMOTIONS
I began this study of emotions based on the desire that I had to better understand why we as Christians have such a difficult time “feeling”. While I agree that we are “not to be moved by how we feel”, as a Christian who strives to walk with the mind of Christ I am beginning to understand that CHRIST FEELS AND FELT THINGS!
The reality is that as you draw closer and closer to God, you will become more and more emotional- crying with injustice, mourning for the dead, anger for those who commit sin, jealous for those who serve other gods, and much more! Serving God doesn’t come just with a “joy band-aid” covering in blindness pain and suffering, serving God comes COMPLETE with emotional responses to others actions today LET’S FACE THEM and let’s learn the appropriate response!
Let’s take the time to look at some EMOTIONS of God based on His scripture:
- For the word of God is quick, and powerful. Heb 4:12
- “O unbelieving generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you?” Mark 9:19
- For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name [is] Jealous, [is] a jealous. God Ex 34:14
- The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen [men] of Israel. Psalm 78:31
- Well done, good and faithful servant! Matt 25:23
- And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. Exodus 3:14
- He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. Psalm 103:10
- My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. Hosea 4:6
- Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6
- Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Simon,” he said to Peter, “are you asleep? Could you not keep watch for one hour? Psalm 14:37
- So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them. Exodus 2:25
- “I hate divorce,” says the LORD God of Israel, “and I hate a man’s covering himself with violence as well as with his garment,” says the LORD Almighty. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith. Mal 2:16
While these scriptures (like many others) might seem all over the map in regards to the potential relevance of this article, they are scriptures which cover a multitude of feelings. Shortness, impatience, jealousy, pride, frustration, resentment, and even hatred. As a matter of fact if you were a causal Bible reader, you might be lead to read these scriptures and see God as TOTALLY temperamental and emotionally unstable! OH NO! This is NOT the case!
GOD IS LOVE
“God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.” John 4:16
God never desired for us to become unemotional statuesque representations of humanity. He never expected us to “ALWAYS BE UP”, and He certainly never expected us to become numb to feelings… He IS A FEELING GOD! What He DOES expect of us however, is that our main controlling instrument is set at the LOVE setting… ALL THE TIME.
The best visual I can give to you is a steering wheel that steers a car. How about instead of the standard “circle” shape, you replace that shape with a heart. Imagine yourself now “steering” your life by YOUR HEART, GOD’S HEART.
When shortness rears its ugly head (and it WILL)… Love endures long and is patient and kind
When impatience rears its ugly head (and it WILL)… Love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy
When jealousy rears its ugly head (and it WILL)… Love is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.
When pride rears its ugly head (and it WILL)… Love is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride)
When intolerance rears its ugly head (and it WILL)… Love is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly
“Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]. As for prophecy (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), it will be fulfilled and pass away; as for tongues, they will be destroyed and cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away [it will lose its value and be superseded by truth].” 1 Cor 13:4-8 AMP
We are not called to be oversensitive and subject to our emotions. We are called to keep those emotions in line with the Word of God and HOW HE HANDLES THINGS. YES, God gets angry, jealous, intolerant- but it is by His love for us, and that His emotions do not go unchecked and it is in this Love and by His example of this Love that we are not all destroyed and we are EXPECTED to NOT destroy others! It would be unkind of God to create us in His image (complete with emotions and feelings), and then ask us to disregard what He put in us… but it would be EXACTLY like God to show us how when we approach our emotions with LOVE, we can steer ourselves on the exact RIGHT PATH… the WALK OF LOVE!
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