Here we are, back to work after Labor Day. I always feel odd after a Holiday because my routine has been disrupted. But between COVID and the Holiday, I haven’t been in my regular spiritual routine for over two weeks. Frankly, I feel a little lost. My feelings are telling me God let me wander off, and He doesn’t care. Could it be true? Is He upset with me because I haven’t been faithful to my quiet time? Has He forsaken me because of my weaknesses?
As a Christian Therapist, I get questions like that all the time. Some people tell me they feel God has forgotten them. Others will say to me they sense their prayers “are just hitting the ceiling.” Many people tell me they don’t feel the love of God, so they think they don’t matter to Him. Maybe all the confusion is because people rarely talk about what being a Christian is supposed to “feel” like.
For myself, I’ve discovered sometimes doing life with God feels like a Monday. I’m just going through the motions in faith, knowing a better day is coming. There are other seasons when He feels like a Saturday night, the 4th of July, complete with fireworks inside my heart. Yep, being a Believer can feel like everything from a sunny day of clarity to a foggy night of feeling lost and wondering if He even cares. All that is part of everyday Christian life.
When I was a new Believer, I read Rick Warren’s masterpiece, The Purpose Driven Life. Rick said having seasons where we don’t “feel” God is not only normal; it’s part of what God uses to mature us. He suggested that God wants us to trust what His word says and not be slaves to our feelings. I couldn’t agree more. But what does His word say?
For one thing, His word says He will never, ever, leave us or forsake us. When we wallow in our feelings, it is easy to forget that Jesus has made His home inside us. And we aren’t a rental property that can quickly be abandoned when we don’t act right. Nope, we were bought and paid for with the blood of Jesus, and He is doing a rehab job on us from the inside out. We might not always feel it, but “He who began a good work in you will not stop until its completion” (Philippians 1:6).
When we realize Christ lives inside us, it is easy to bust down some of the crazy ideas we get in our heads when our feelings aren’t behaving. For instance, if He lives inside us, do our prayers need to make it past the ceiling? Nope, He hears those prayers just fine. With Him being inside us, is it even possible to wander away from Him? Nope. Even when I am walking the wilderness, He is with me.
As Psalm 139 says, “You are so intimately aware of me, Lord…You know every step I will take before my journey even begins. You’ve gone into my future to prepare the way, and in kindness, you follow behind me to spare me from the harm of my past. You have laid your hand on me!” That’s a promise worth getting excited about!
All you Christian feelings junkies take heart. Your life with God is based on His promises and not your feelings. He’s inside you, and He won’t give up on you! Even when living life with Him feels like a Monday. Hang tough; Saturday night is just around the corner.