Feelings or Faith – Choose!

Feelings or Faith

“He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what He had promised, He was able also to perform.” (Romans 4:20-21)

As I was working out on the treadmill today, I was reminded of a woman in one of my fitness classes a few years ago. She was anorexic. She weighed about 100 pounds, yet she workout out for hours every day. Why? Because she ‘felt’ fat. Despite her emaciated frame, sunken eyes, and the fact that the scale told her she was 100 pounds, she still ‘felt’ fat.

How can our feelings be so deceptive? Yes, anorexia is an extreme condition, but we all experience this deception in varying degrees. Insecurity, inadequacy, loneliness, boredom and yes hunger.  All these feelings can be so paralyzing and debilitating if we allow them.

In the scripture above, Abraham faced many obstacles in his life. Given the options of fleeing or facing his fears, he choose to exercise his faith and trust God. If he focused on his feelings, he would have given up in despair and would never have subdued Canaan. He would never have been the founder of an entire nation!

Every day, we’re faced with a choice to act based on our feelings (of fear) or our faith. Let’s learn how to consistently make the best choice.

If you’re tired of letting your feelings control too many waking hours of your life, apply these simple truths about your feelings:

  1. Feelings are Not Facts!

  2. Your feelings are subject to change based on your mood, hormones, or what’s happening in your life, yet we treat them as fact. We’ve got to learn how to separate our feelings from what is actually a fact. If you failed at something, you may feel like a failure, but that’s only a feeling, and NOT a fact. Your past success can attest to the fact that you are not a failure.
  3. Your Feelings Determine Your Fears

  4. Too many of us ignore our feelings or even worse, we give in to them. A better approach is to use your feelings as a clue to tell you that something deeper is going on and needs your attention.
  5. We often eat when we’re not hungry to stuff a deeper feeling that we don’t want to face; we procrastinate because we’re really afraid of failing; we get angry because we don’t feel like we are being heard or respected. Like the ‘check-engine’ light in your car, use your feelings as a signal that something in your life needs attention– these usually come in the form of fears.
  6. So the next time you ‘feel’ bored, lonely, hungry, angry, etc.; use your feelings as your internal G.P.S. to guide you to what your fears are.

Faith Trumps Feelings

Of course, not all feelings are bad. But, based on our life experiences, many us are led solely by our feelings. “I don’t feel like praying”; “I feel bored”; “I feel lonely”; “I feel sad.”

Although it often may not feel like it, you can change your feelings by applying your faith.

Recently, I’ve started practicing a new habit I teach in our Haven program. When I’m experiencing a powerful feeling such as hunger, I’m learning to ask myself, “Is it the truth?”

The conversation goes like this in my head …

“I feel hungry.”

“Really? Is that the truth?”

“No, the truth is I just ate 30 minutes ago.”

“Then what are you really feeling?”

“The truth is, I really don’t want to write (or some other undesirable task). I’d rather do something more enjoyable.”

“Why don’t you want to write?”

“Because I don’t think I will have anything valuable to say.”

At this point, I say a short prayer to God letting Him know that I seek my value from Him and Him alone. I declare that I am valuable because I am made in His image and that I can do all things through Him.

What’s important is that I’ve taken the time to get to the root of what I’m really feelings and turn it over to the only one powerful enough to manage my crazy, irrational feelings. Remember, your feelings are a clue to what your deeper fears are.

Your feelings and fears may be very different from mine, but I encourage you to do this exercise when you’re feeling hungry, angry, or some other feeling or emotion that is leading you astray.

We must commit ourselves to practicing new habits. Simply hoping our problems and strongholds will go away will never change our destructive habits. Like the anorexic woman in my fitness class, your feelings can overpower you and distort the reality of who you really are in Christ so we must replace our feelings with faith.

Our assignment is to confront our feelings and apply our faith to every feeling that does not line up with the Word of God.

Are you willing to give it a try?

Speaking of feelings, fears, and faith, I’m getting ready to do something I’ve never done before. Preston and I are still working out the details, but we will be opening up our monthly Haven membership program to everyone soon. Now those of you who always wanted to take our program and join our community will finally have an opportunity to. More details to follow!!!

 

 

Leave a Reply

3 Comments on "Feelings or Faith – Choose!"

Notify of
avatar
Paula P
Member
Paula P

Thank you Cathy for this timely article. I am being led by feelings and they are keeping me from being who God created me to be. I’m looking forward to hearing more about Haven! I am blessed by your open and honest look at your self and how you bravely share it with so many people.

Sharon B
Member

Another great tool for the arsenal. Thanks!

wpDiscuz