Let Your Feelings Be Your Guide?

Q. In the past you have said: “Feelings are almost never a good indicator for behavior.” Would you say that the guide of the Holy Spirit comes through feelings as well as other ways? What’s your take on this?

A. Feelings are associated with the fallen human part of us, our mind will and emotion, rather than the spiritual part of us.

As near as I can tell, every time the Lord communicated with one of His people in the Bible, He is said to have spoken to them. (No prophet ever said, “I feel like we should …” but “Thus saith the Lord.”)

When we’re seeking the Lord’s will for us we listen for His voice to direct us. When we do we’ll often hear him tell us to make what scholars call “contrary to feelings” choices. That’s where He asks us to do something we don’t feel like doing, like loving an enemy, forgiving someone who’s hurt us, or putting the needs of others above our own.

As we stop letting our feelings be our guide and let the Holy Spirit assume that role, we’ll find ourselves living the life God has called us to live and we’ll understand what His will for us is, His good and pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2).

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