Thursday, July 16, 2015

Feelings ....

Dear friends,
Today's post contains some of the most powerful truth about choices for the Christian---Jesus Christ has set us free to live in his truth and victory. Our feelings are very strong, but Christ offers us freedom and we do not have to let them control us. He said, "Let not your heart be troubled," in John 14, but how do we do that? Sometimes I think widowhood is an extreme course in discipleship because the widow faces the issue of surrendering those feelings head on. Sometimes it's a spiritual battle and struggle in a very lonely place. But it's not simply a matter of stopping the feelings. We can't just stop the emotions! Instead we need to replace them with something better; I don't think she intended to, but in this piece from her journal Elizabeth shows us how she did it. I treasure the way she identified her feelings---she didn't deny or stuff them; instead she chose to remind herself of who she is in Christ and what she knows about God and His ways .... When we do that, a transformation occurs. Read on, take hope, and keep on keeping on my sisters...  ferree

It had been one of those days when it feels . . . .
  • It feels like everyone has forgotten me.
  • It feels like I am so very alone.
  • It feels like I don't matter.
  • It feels like there is judgements from too many sources.
  • It feels like I will never succeed at this single-parent thing.
  • It feels like the tears will never end.
  • It feels like the pressure from it all will surely make my head literally explode.
And then . . .

The Holy Spirit gently touches my heart. I'm reminded of previous days when the feelings were so very intense and of how I made it through those days.

It is certain I didn't survive on feelings! I was able to walk through those days by forcing myself to focus on the things that I know.
  • I may feel forgotten and alone, but I know God is always with me and He has not forgotten me and He has a purpose for this path on which He has placed me. ( ". . .I will never leave thee nor forsake thee." Heb. 13:5 )
  • I may feel judgement (and it may honestly be there), but I know that I only answer to the few individuals to whom I've made myself accountable and ultimately to God Himself. ( "So then, everyone of us shall give an account of himself to God." Rom. 14:12 )
  • I may feel that the tears will never end, but I know that God sees my tears and that He promises joy. ( " . . . weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning." Ps. 30:5 )
  • I may feel that the pressure is just too great, but I know God's strength is available to me if I choose to accept it. ( "And He said unto me, '. . . My strength is made perfect in weakness.' " II Cor.12:9)
God created mankind with feelings, but those feelings were not to be the driving force in life. I must choose to live by what is constant - by what I know.

That day, I took each of those areas where it feels, and I acknowledged before God the truth of what I know.

This process is emotionally and mentally exhausting. I was left feeling spent, and my eyes still burned from the tears that had been shed. But the reward for the effort was there -- the weight was lifted, and I was at peace.

© 2015 by Elizabeth Fruetel. Used by permission. Visit her blog, Musings for more of her insightful writing and godly wisdom on widowhood.

4 comments:

  1. Another great post! Feelings are just feelings. God's truth is what is important.

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  2. I recently read a quote from Elisabeth Elliot saying......."we worship God in spirit and in truth and not based upon how we feel" and this is true..... our feelings will trip us up and often times deceive us. Through grace His spirit and truth will enable us to overcome.

    I do believe the enemy of our soul delights in our roller coaster feelings...... King David in Psalms expressed and experienced every feeling and emotion known to man.
    In Psalm 31 these were some of his feelings (and at times are mine even after almost four years).
    Be merciful to me , O Lord, for I am in distress, my eyes grow weak in sorrow, my soul and body are in grief. My life is consumed with anguish and my years with groaning. Because of my affliction my strength fails. I am a dread to my friends and even forgotten by them as though I were dead, my neighbors look upon me with contempt. (David didn't just imagine all this, he felt it).
    And then in the latter part of this same Psalm he rejoices and praises God ......saying. " how great is your goodness unto me, in my distress I cried for mercy and you heard my cry for help, love the Lord all ye saints, for the Lord preserves the faithful , the proud he knows afar off, be strong and take heart all whose hope is in the Lord".
    David was not hesitant of vocally expressing his feelings to the Lord. David's spirit and God's truth out won and overcame his great anguish of soul and feelings of despair. L/Dodi


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  3. Thank you for this post. Today was a day when I experienced every one of the feelings in your list!

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  4. Thank you for posting this article. I miss my husband so much today, much more than the other days this year. And it has been 4 years since he went home to the Lord. Hebrews 13:5. I am not alone. Amen.

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