The weather is starting to get cool where I live and the struggle is real. Getting out of bed in cold weather is one of the hardest battles of winter. Warm beds in a cold room hold onto us like gorilla glue! Sheet’s and blankets hypnotically hold me and fight to keep me in bed.
Those feelings hit me every morning when the weather turns cold, but reality is the motivator and I get out of bed and start the day. My struggle with these feelings is not a big deal. However, feelings are a reality in our life, and sometimes we let them have too big a part of our life. Overcoming our feelings and not letting them master us is our everyday battle. Winning the battle takes proper understanding of our feelings.
- Feelings live in us as a tool to be used. Tools are helpful and some tools are the ones we use all the time, but we have to understand their proper purpose. Feelings live as an important part of our everyday and are not to be ignored, but they are not to be the focus of our life. When we allow ourselves to be ruled by our feelings, we are like a ship in the sea with no rudder. We end up sailing many different directions and going nowhere.
- Feelings are a guide God often uses to help us navigate the complex day to day realities of life, but we are not to get into the habit of just following our feelings. Too often today we teach young people to “Follow their heart.” I disagree strongly with this statement because we are setting students up to fail. When students “Follow their heart,” they are usually just following their feelings. Feelings lie to us and can often just be plain wrong. Often times what feels right in the moment is usually regretted later.
- Feelings are in their proper role when we are living a life of Biblical faith. Faith’s role is to rule over our feelings. Our faith guides us and shows us what feelings to listen to and not listen to. Faith is the anchor for our feelings and keeps those feelings properly contained in reality. Feelings that do not have faith as a guide will travel all over the place and always be subject to change. Life with this reality is a roller coaster of emotions and eventually causes generational pain.
- The Bible tells us many things that can go against our feelings, however if we act on those truths in faith, we see the benefits in our life. The Bible is a guide showing us when our feelings are speaking the truth and when they are lying. The Bible never guides us in the wrong direction, so we can trust it over our own feelings.
Thinking back over my life, most of the decisions I regret are because my feelings were in control. What about you? Who controls your everyday life, your faith or your feelings?