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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Faith..... nothing to do with feelings

I’ve been studying the book of Job over the past couple of weeks. One thing I know for sure, He was a strong man in more ways than I can readily imagine. Truth be told, I am not sure how much I could go through without buying the arguments of his friends.....but, I'm quite sure I don’t even want to know. As I read through my amplified Bible version, I came across this note and I would like to share it with you verbatim:

Faith over feelings  - Note by Joyce Meyer:

Job endured many tests and trials, but his patience and faith triumphed in the end (as we will see in chapter 42). God tests us too. One of the ways He does so is by allowing us to go through dry times – times when nothing seems to minister to us or water our souls. We go to church, but we feel no different when we leave. We read the latest book or listen to the latest song, but it does us no good at all.

I have had those times in my life and ministry, and Job certainly had them - in what seems like extreme measure (see Job 19 v 7-11)! I have gone through mountaintop experiences, and I have been through valleys. I have had dry times in my prayer life and in my praise and worship. I have had times when I would go into a meeting or conference and be able to feel the presence of God, and I have had times when I would go and feel absolutely nothing. I have learned to believe that God is with me whether I feel it or not. There have also been times when I could hear from God so clearly and I know that I heard a ‘’Word in season’’ for me. There have been other times when I have not heard anything at all.

Looking back on m spiritual life, I realise that at times I have gone up and down, up and down. When I was up I felt I was saved, and when I was down I felt that I was lost. When I felt sure God had called me, I was up, and when I was uncertain of my calling, I was down. When dry times came upon me, I let them affect me. At that time I did not know what was happening to me or why. Now I know that God was working all the harmful things out of me and getting me to the point where I did not base my faith on my feelings.

I will be honest with you. I rarely go through those times now. I just love God, and that’s it! I worship Him, and that’s it! I pray, I believe He hears me, and that’s it! I know I’m called, and I go out and do what I’m called to do, and I do not go through all the ups and downs I used to go through. Why? Because I have learned to stop basing everything on my feelings and to live by faith instead.  I do not allow my emotions to determine whether I believe God is with me or not. I just choose to believe He is. That does not mean I never experience a rough time of have a bad  day, but those times no longer control what I believe.

I do not believe God can allow us to go from one emotional high to another. If He did, we would depend too much on them and would probably start thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought. God loves us and protects us from depending on emotions too much so that He can continue to use us.

We must learn to trust that God knows what He is doing in us. If we feel something in our emotions, that is fine. If we do not feel anything, that is fine too. We must remember that we are in this for the long haul – not just for those times when we feel good, but also for those times when we feel bad or do not feel anything at all. Be patient and stay faithful. God will always come through for you.

I thought that was really deep. I am no stranger to those times when it ‘feels’ like we are far away from God, or worse....that God is far away from us. I remember going through that sort of wilderness experience earlier this year. I had a deep and really intense sense that God was far away from me. There was just so much silence and it didn’t ‘feel’ like any of my praise, worship, prayers, quiet times, were yielding any result.

I recall vividly sitting on my couch, Bible in hand, journal on my laps. I couldn’t bring myself to open the Bible, I couldn’t raise  a song on my lips, I couldn’t pray. I just sat there in an otherwise unnatural stillness. Eventually, when my heart felt like it could take no more, I spoke out loud and said ‘Why have you left me so alone Father?’ The response was so clear that it was almost audible. God said ‘I am with you my daughter. I never left. I will never leave’. As hot tears rolled down my cheeks, all I could say was ‘Thank You Lord, thank You Lord’.

This is why I thought to share this Bible note with you today. I have been there and He met me and gave me the assurance which I now give you.... You may not feel Him sis, but He is ALWAYS there!

More than anything else this season, as we mark the birth of our saviour Jesus Christ ...let this assurance wash over you afresh. God loves YOU!  He promised never to leave you or forsake you. He says He does not sleep nor slumber because He is watching over YOU!

Now how awesome is that?

I leave you with this: Job 19 v 25; Job 22 v 21 - 30

Be blessed, for surely you are blessed!

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About Me

Entrepreneur, Mentor, Wife, Mother, Sister, Friend. A firm believer in God. Walking in faith everyday that by His grace, I will achieve harmony in all areas of my life, and make measurable impact in the lives of other women of the world

WORD FOR THE WEEK

LUKE 1:

34“-How can this be, Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” 35The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the Holy One to be born will be called the Son of God

JEREMIAH 2:

5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you [as My chosen instrument], and before you were born I separated and set you apart, consecrating you; [and] I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.

6 Then said I, Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am only a youth. 7 But the Lord said to me, Say not, I am only a youth; for you shall go to all to whom I shall send you, and whatever I command you, you shall speak.

8 Be not afraid of them [their faces], for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord. 9 Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said to me, Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. 10 See, I have this day appointed you to the oversight of the nations and of the kingdoms to root out and pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.

1st CORINTHIANS 1:

25 [This is] because the foolish thing [that has its source in] God is wiser than men, and the weak thing [that springs] from God is stronger than men. 26 For [simply] consider your own call, brethren; not many [of you were considered to be] wise according to human estimates and standards, not many influential and powerful, not many of high and noble birth. 27 [No] for God selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is foolish to put the wise to shame, and what the world calls weak to put the strong to shame. 28 And God also selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is lowborn and insignificant and branded and treated with contempt, even the things that are nothing, that He might depose and bring to nothing the things that are,

Colossians 1:

28 Him we preach and proclaim, warning and admonishing everyone and instructing everyone in all wisdom (comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God), that we may present every person mature (full-grown, fully initiated, complete, and perfect) in Christ (the Anointed One).

29 For this I labor [[z]unto weariness], striving with all the superhuman energy which He so mightily enkindles and works within me.