Today I want to focus on how you feel when you pray. Do you have any kind of emotion while praying and can you identify these feelings?
For most of my “charismatic” Christian life I was taught to ignore and/or suppress my feelings because you cannot trust your heart – in this case meaning the seat of your emotions. On the one hand it is said to rejoice and be ecstatically happy in the Lord ALWAYS, on the other hand you are supposed to feel miserable and guilty because you’re a sinner, and in the middle somewhere these expressions must be suppressed. When you start breaking it down the above makes no sense, yet these thoughts play out in our heart and mind.
Before I continue with our emotions, I want you to think about whether God is an emotional being? Do you think the Lord has feelings? Do you think He has an imagination? Do you think He walked around emotionless? If you read the Gospels you will find that Jesus was and is an emotional person, and if He is the express image of God then He demonstrated God’s emotions, God’s thoughts, God’s nature, God’s hopes and dreams.
Our own portrayal and image of Jesus and our Father is greatly influenced by how we think He FEELS about us. When we feel bad about ourselves, we risk falling into the trap that God must also feel bad about us. This is so far from the truth though. When we feel happy and successful then we think God must be happy and pleased with us. In other words, we base our belief in God upon our OWN emotional state and frame of mind, instead of how He really thinks and feels. Sadly, we use the same standards and judge others by the same measure – upon how WE think and feel.
Because we are dealing with prayer, I want you to ask yourself the following questions. If you will do this thoughtfully and honestly the Holy Spirit will have an opportunity to set you free. Remember, you are in His presence. This is about you and the Lord and your relationship with Him. It has nothing to do with anyone else and He already knows how you feel. This is not about the Lord, it is about you.
- When you do something wrong, do you feel that God is upset with you?
Do you feel guilty or condemned?
Why do you feel that way?
- Do you feel motivated to come to God and pray when you have been “bad”?
- When you read your Bible do you feel that God is pleased with you?
Why do you feel that way?
- Do you pray so that the Lord will be pleased with you?
- What thoughts are associated with your feelings?
- Do you feel confident after you have prayed that God has heard you and has answered your prayer?
- Do you feel happy during and after prayer? Think about what emotions you are feeling.
Remember, if life and death is in the power of the tongue, and the mouth speaks from the abundance of the heart – your emotions – then what is being cultivated in you while you pray? Is it possible that your prayers are bringing forth either life or death (anything rooted in your own opinions and worldly philosophies)?
Holy Spirit, I ask you to help my brothers and sisters as they come before you in prayer. Open their understanding so that they can discern what is going on within them. Lead them into the kingdom of God where they will become emotionally and mentally filled with your righteousness, joy and peace.
Till tomorrow ….
Be happy 😊
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