Feelings are important, but they are not the most important thing in the world.
Perhaps this truth becomes more evident as we age. After all, our bodies seem to ache and we tire more easily, but we downplay those problems, take Advil, and move on. We simply decide not to be limited by the feelings in our bones. At least we try.
Emotions are a gift. But when those emotions blind us to more important things, trouble ensues.
Everyone wants to feel loved. When we feel loved, we also feel peace, meaning, self-worth, and even joy. So what’s wrong with seeking that good feeling?
Life gets in the way. We often say this when we are sidetracked from achieving a goal or pursuing a dream. But sometimes life gets in the way of feeling loved, too.
Certain ugly feelings can get in the way of feeling loved. Like jealousy, hurt pride, competition, anger, rebellion. And these feelings tend to grow out of proportion. A casual comment from a co-worker replays in our heads until we sense a lack of respect, and our defenses shoot up. Then we start noticing other comments and place them in the same ever-expanding box of hurt feelings.
We try to hide that box of hurt feelings with anger and self-righteousness, and just get further away from the good emotions of feeling loved. We begin to demand better treatment, so that we can feel better, but often we just end up damaging our relationships, which makes us feel worse, not better.
Way more important than our feelings is the Creator of those feelings, God. If we take our eyes off our feelings and turn them toward God, we have a better chance of clearing out the clutter of hurt feelings.
I should know. I used to let these things fester. There was even a time in my life that I didn’t want to pray. What? I somehow knew, deep down, that God would show me what was wrong if I took time to consult him. So I didn’t. I went along in my foolish pride for weeks, maybe months before I got turned around. Thankfully, God forgave me. My relationship with Him improved and the feeling of being loved forced out the pride and rebellion.
Just realizing that feelings are not the most important thing can help. A devotional I read today says this. “Act on faith, not on feelings. If you act on faith with your emotions, God will help you control all those up and down feelings.”
I need this reminder every day.