I struggle with “feeling.” What does that word even mean? Someone may say about a worship service, “I just didn’t feel it.” Still others will say, “I was able to feel the Spirit move.” I think “feeling” is one of those words that means a million different things to a million different people, and I don’t know that every definition is helpful. I ran across this quote, and I feel like it is helpful in our thinking about “feeling.”
From Jim Andrew’s Polishing God’s Monuments:
“When the Lord’s ways do not neatly conform to our pat little paradigms of what seems (to our fallible minds) right and just, and good and faithful, it says something about human nature that usually the first thought that comes to mind is that something is wrong with God. Somehow the last thing that occurs to us is that God is simply too big for our small boxes. It is imperative at such times that we learn to be humble, not haughty. God always deserves the benefit of the doubt. And, faith always pleads with us, ”Dear soul, trust in God’s power, trust God’s wisdom, trust God’s goodness, trust God’s faithfulness “even though to your mixed-up, emotionally over-charged mind he doesn’t seem to be living up to his resume or promises. Just do it anyways.
”Christian common sense should also remind us that divine revelation is always a far more reliable barometer of reality than our personal perceptions, distorted as they are by how we think a moral and upright God is obliged to behave in this situation or that. Friends, my advice is this: discount personal feelings “rest in the biblical facts. Don’t always be awash in how things seem; anchor your faith on how divine revelation says they are. Never allow blind emotions to float you off into the open sea of doubt.
”With that adjustment, one can trust his goodness even when God may not seem to be good; one can trust his wisdom even when he may not seem to be wise; one can trust he is acting in character even when he may not seem to be measuring up to his own revealed profile; one can trust his power even when it seems he is weak; one can trust his faithfulness even when it seems he is not being faithful.“