Monday, May 20, 2013
WHAT DO I DO WITH THESE FEELINGS?
This past week, God has been teaching me about a fruit of the spirit called self-control. And I stumbled on Joyce Meyer’s messages.. She has so many messages on self-control. So check them out. Growing up, I was really stubborn; you can verify that from my big brother. I did not mind fighting with him even if I ended up crying lol. But my sister Sharon, never ever got into a fight with my brother or anyone in school for that matter. I just always assumed she was too gentle to fight for herself. And there were even times I would be so mad she did not react or fight back, I would be tempted to fight for her. But she always remained calm. Or she would just cry it out. It took me a while to understand what self-control is. And frankly I am still learning and exercising this fruit of the spirit every day. It is not easy I must say, but when God is holding your hands, walking on water becomes normal.
Let’s go into why we act or react the way we do. This has a lot to do with how we feel or what we are feeling at that particular point in time. It's the feeling of uncontrolled anger that always drove me to fight with my big brother. And he in turn would feel provoked and sometimes give me some spanking or just ignore me. Now we have so many feelings inside of us. And I really don't believe any feeling we have was given to us by the devil. No! The bible says we are made in the image of God. So I believe God has feelings as well. If you doubt it, just read john 11;1-35. When Jesus saw Marry and Martha weeping after the death of their brother, he also wept. Now when someone dies people feel sad, really sad, and that feeling is what moves them to tears. So Jesus who is one with God came to us in the form of a man and felt most of what we feel today and refer to as feelings. And for God to send his only son to die, it means he felt compassion for us.
Now that we know feelings are not bad, it’s what we do with them afterwards that matters. Now the devil tries to capitalize on these feelings and make you forget that you can access something called self-control which is a fruit of the Holy spirit. Now if the Holy Spirit is dormant in your life, His fruits would also be dormant in your life. But if he is active, you begin to manifest and exercise the fruits not just within but outwardly as well. It would be so easy for me to tell you to control your feelings but here is the problem. Matthew 26;40-43 lets us know how the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. Jesus was about to go through the most difficult time of his life, and he needed his disciples more than ever to pray with him at that time, but they were sleeping. Now the bible also says we must die to the flesh for the spirit in us to grow. Romans 8;13. Now here is what happens with our feelings. Feelings are so tricky, it works a lot with the flesh. I feel like having ice cream I have to get it. I feel like she needs to be taught a lesson, so I teach her a lesson. I feel like if I don't satisfy this desire I would die. Well the truth is if you don't the flesh would just have to accept it.
Most of us are not willing to go through the rigorous work of dealing with these feelings with the help of the Holy Spirit. We always want the short cuts, the easy way out. And that is what the devil capitalizes on. Now some people ask for the fruit of the spirit, and expect it to just land on them and begin to manifest itself. Well it does not really work that way. Once you have accepted Jesus, his spirit is already within you. But you need to exercise it. An example is when I was asking God to teach me how to love like him and many people began to really do annoying and unfair things to me. Eventually I stopped asking for love. I switched to self-control and the next day, someone really tried my patience and i went off at him. On my way home something kept saying but you said you wanted self-control. And I realized oh so that was an avenue for me to practice it. Okay next time I will. And the next day, honestly I went off at another girl because in my mind I have told myself or taught myself to believe that the best way for me to deal with it is to pour it out immediately and not keep anything inside. But the gentle Holy Spirit has a different approach. So change does not just happen in one day, it’s a process most people are not willing and patient enough to go through. Every feeling can be controlled with the help of the Holy Spirit. But it’s a process. If you start working out today, you will not automatically be in shape tomorrow or even next week. It takes time. A friend of mine gave me a work out package he would like to take home to market. So he asked me to do some of the work out exercises in the video. The first day I was really pumped up and ready to go. By the time I was done, I was feeling like my head was spinning, I wanted to throw up and was just so exhausted. Till tomorrow, I have not gone back to it lol.. Well that is how it feels when the Holy Spirit if trying to adjust our way of thinking or help us control our feelings. We give up too soon! I was willing to go through with the exercise but my body, was reluctant. Many of us want the fruit of the spirit, but our bodies, our feelings just seem to overpower us all the time. The secrete I found is, if your body says no today, try again tomorrow till your body and feelings learn to listen to you. The spirit of God in you is greater than your flesh. If you feed the flesh it grows and becomes stronger. when it says your flesh needs to die, I can't imagine killing myself, I believe it means I refuse to give my flesh what it wants all the time, but then I pay more attention to what my spirit needs and what the spirit inside of me is saying. Now I cannot compare myself to Sharon who has been exercising and practicing the fruit of self-control since we were kids. But I can keep my focus on God like peter walking on water to ensure that I do not sink.
So the next time you have a feeling you think you cannot control, turn to the Holy spirit, ask for directions and don't be quick to react. Take 2 minutes to listen to the voice inside. What you do with your feelings can either destroy you or make you! Have a great week friends!