Faulty Feelings

They are real. They are so convincing. We cannot ignore them. They often influence how we respond to others. We express them with words such as: “I’m on top of the world,” “I just don’t see any solution,” “Everything is just fine,” or “I’m stuck.” We call them feelings and they are extremely powerful in influencing how we perceive our lives and the world around us.

Have you ever tried to convince someone who was fearful or constantly worrying that she did not need to feel that way? It is not an easy task is it? To convince someone whose veins are pumping with elation, confidence, fear or worry that he or she ought to be feeling different is a formidable undertaking. This is predictable since what we believe creates how we feel. To challenge a person’s feelings is to confront what he or she regards as true.

In Luke 12, Jesus tackled this daunting task of challenging some faulty feelings by correcting their deceptive source: erroneous underlying beliefs. As Jesus systematically unveiled, to believe that our security lies in what we possess leads to either deceptive joy or unnecessary fear.

After warning against greed, Jesus told a story about a man who had acquired great financial success. Exhilarating thoughts raced through the mind of this newly wealthy man. “From now on, everything is going to be just fine. My life is going to be great! It’s time to enjoy myself!” Undoubtedly, like his modern day counterparts who win the lottery his emotions were jumping for joy. As far as he was concerned, the sun was shining and all was rosy.

Although his feelings were real and genuine, Jesus revealed that his unconquerable spirit and happiness had deceived him. After all, he was still “poor toward God” and because of his thoughts God had called him a fool since he would die that night. Feelings are driven by beliefs. Faulty beliefs lead to faulty feelings. Our security does not lie in what we have. Luke 12:16-21

Immediately, Jesus launched into destroying those thoughts responsible for creating unnecessary financially based fear and worry. Our powerful God is capable of providing. God cares even about tiny plants and birds. And then Jesus switched to the tender and sustaining language of familial relationship. “Your Father knows you need these things.”Jesus’ message was, don’t worry about your life. Seek God’s kingdom and God will provide for you. Luke 12:22-31

Feelings are driven by beliefs. Faulty beliefs lead to faulty fears. Our security does not lie in what we have, it rests upon us being rich toward God.

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Barry Newton

Married to his wonderful wife Sofia and a former missionary in Brazil, Barry enjoys trying to express old truths in fresh ways. They are the parents of two young men.

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