I have a confession to make.
There are a lot of things in life that I almost never feel like doing. I never feel like going to the gym. I don’t always feel like going to work. I don’t always feel like taking out the trash, and I find it extremely difficult to say no to fries and cupcakes. I don’t know. Maybe you can relate.
Interestingly enough however, the more I give into these desires, the more I’m faced with the reality that we shouldn’t go through life living by our feelings. If we lived by our feelings we wouldn’t have any money, we’d be extremely unhealthy, and our lives would be massively unorganized. But that would be a terrible way to live our lives, so most of the time we just do whatever we know we need to do even when we don’t feel like it.
This ability to do the things that we don’t feel like doing in our everyday lives is something we must learn to apply to our relationship with God. The truth is, a lot of the time the breakthrough we are so desperately seeking is directly connected to our obedience. So, in the same way we manage to take out the trash and go to work when we don’t feel like it, we must learn to be obedient to God even when we don’t feel like it.
Sometimes this looks like doing something you don’t want to do, like forgiving someone who hurt you or surrendering a certain area of your life to God. However, sometimes obedience only requires persistence. This might mean that you just have to keep praying, keep serving, keep reading your Bible, and keep showing up. Either way, if we want to live lives of breakthrough and blessing, we can’t allow feelings to get the best of us.
In 2 Kings 5:9-15 we learn about a man named Naaman who traveled over three thousand miles to visit the prophet Elisha in search of healing. Upon his arrival, Elisha sends a messenger to tell him the word of the Lord. In order for him to be healed he must dip himself in the Jordan River seven times, but Naaman wasn’t satisfied and went off in a rage.
Why didn’t the prophet come out to see him? He came all this way. Why was Elisha telling him to bathe in the Jordan River? There were better rivers where he came from! This journey was not going as planned, and Naaman was letting his feelings get the best of him. He would’ve went home the same way he came were it not for the people in his life who talked some sense into him. And when he did as God said, he was healed.
Like Naaman, we may not always want to do what God tells us to do. Things don’t always turn out the way we plan, and there will be days where we just don’t feel like it. In these moments, we must be careful to not let our feelings get the best of us or cause us to miss out on God’s blessing. He doesn’t ask us to do things because he wants us to live miserable lives; he asks us to do things because he knows what’s best for us.
So, if he’s asking you to do something, don’t rationalize it. Just do it. You may not have traveled three thousand miles, but you’ve come way too far to go back now.