Saturday, July 23, 2016
actions vs feelings
He says that if the enemy can get us to FEEL like doing good things, but not act on it, then he's won the battle.
Conversely, I was listening to my favorite preacher today who said that it's a good idea to practice things like fasting, giving to the poor, and praying even when we don't feel like it's doing any good. We should practice being kind and loving to other people, even if we aren't FEELING very loving or kind.
There are lots of reasons why this is true. One, of course, is that if you ACT like you care about someone, and act kindly toward them for a long time, your feelings often come around and you start FEELING the love and kindness that you were previously only acting on externally.
But that doesn't always happen. Sometimes you keep being kind to someone, and you never "feel it". As you know, love (in the sense that we're commanded to love others) isn't a feeling. It's an action. It means doing good for others, helping them, in order to improve their lives. Many times, a feeling that we call "love" will accompany those actions. But sometimes we just DO love, without feeling it.
Some people call this faking it until we make it. I guess there's some truth to that. But even when you don't FEEL like praying, spend some time in prayer anyway. Let Him know that you don't feel like it. That's prayer in itself. Ask for help in doing it anyway. He'll help you. The Bible tells you He will. He works IN us to act AND TO WILL according to His purpose.
So next time you just don't feel like praying, or fasting, or giving to the poor... do it anyway. The feelings will probably follow.
God, thanks for helping us overcome the enemy by doing the right thing anyway.