Faith Versus Feelings

Many times, in Christian circles I have heard it said that believers are to walk by faith and not by feelings. But I have noticed that when Christians feel bad or are experiencing depression, they often do follow their feelings – straight to the doctor’s office. They want meds to make them feel better so that they can enjoy life and resist the constant urge to kill themselves. Others, who were born with a dose of overconfidence and optimism may also end up running to the doctor – not to make them feel better but to help them get some rest. They desire drugs to balance their overexcited nerves and bring peace to their souls.

“I know I’m supposed to walk by faith, Doctor, not by feelings. So please, you have to fix my feelings so I can walk by faith.”

The question is, what does Jesus think of this idea? Can you imagine Him sending his disciples to a doctor when they were upset?

“I’m afraid you’ve got a little problem with manic-depression, Peter, jumping out the boat one moment, confident that you can walk on water. The next moment, you’re in a panic, crying out for me to save you as you sink beneath the waves. You need some meds to even out your mood swings!”

Feelings change. They’re like waves of the sea – up one moment, down the next. That’s why Christians shouldn’t live by their feelings. But does that mean we shouldn’t have them?

Many of us have felt God’s presence. We have experienced His touch. Our emotions have been stirred through worship. When we read His Word, it stirs our hearts to action. If you know you should step out in faith but your heart’s not in it, should you look to natural means to fix your feelings?

Or should you seek the LORD with all your heart and believe the promise in Jeremiah 29:13?