God gave us emotions but He never told us to trust our feelings. The Bible states: “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; Who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9 (NKJV). This verse warns us to rely on the Word of God and not our emotions.
Scripture says that man is fearfully and wonderfully made. We were created with a full package of emotions. Jesus experienced sorrow and distress (John 11) says He wept over the death of His friend Lazarus), the pain of rejection (Is. 53:3), was joyful (Luke 7:34), and even expressed a sense of humor (Matthew 7:3-5). But feelings can be deceitful! Since it is impossible for God to lie (Numbers 23:19, Hebrews 6:18), the promises of God should be our comfort and source of hope and encouragement.
Upon the arrest of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, most of His apostles scattered. Their fearful feelings directed their steps, not the promises of Jesus. They forgot His promise to be their help.
“For I, the LORD your God will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’” Isaiah 41:13 (NKJV)
As believers, we will face difficult times. Many of us will suffer persecution. Therefore, it helps to recall spiritual truths. For example Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8 (NKJV). Recalling the faithfulness of God when He carried you through past tribulations should calm your anxiety because He’ll carry you through present trials and future adversity. We might not feel His presence but we can trust God’s character and integrity.
I don’t always feel His presence but God’s promises do not depend upon my feelings; They rest upon His integrity. R.C. Sproul
When life is good, praise Him. When life is turbulent, praise Him. Praise God at all times! There are spiritual seasons and every season has a purpose. If we are happy and relaxed during times of plenty but anxious and fearful when we experience a dry season, our faith is weak. God provides tests and hard times to build our spiritual muscles. Faith is not a feeling. Faith means we take God at His word. I have found it helpful to write down the promises of God and praying them back to the Father. They assure me of God’s earnest commitment to provide, strengthen, direct, instruct, help, and comfort.
“ Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 (NKJV)
“The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit.” Psalm 34:18 (NKJV)
“’For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,’ says the Lord, who has mercy on you.” Isaiah 54:10 (NKJV)
“And teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 (NKJV)
Beware of leaning on your own understanding! Waiting for God to move can be challenging, especially if the answer to our prayer is NO or Not Now! God sees the end result and has a purpose for everything. Mankind is short-sighted so we must learn patience and perseverance by trusting an unseen God through faith. As we set our minds on things above, remembering the truths within Scripture and casting all our cares to the feet of Christ, we will find a peace beyond understanding and glorify our God while we rest in His promises.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV)
“Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.” Colossians 3:2 (NKJV)
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalm 119:105 (NKJV)
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)
“ For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NKJV)