Creflo Dollar - How to Walk in Emotional Stability
3 John, let's look at verse 2 and let's read verse 2 out loud together, ready, read. "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospers". Now, as we said before, and I laid this foundation for three weeks, as we said before, man is a spirit, he possesses a soul, he lives in a physical body. You are not your body, and you are not your soul. You are a spirit being. You have a soul. You live in a physical body. Your soul is the area that contains your mind, your will, and your emotions. Your soul is the wave that Satan wants to ride to see if he can take you to certain places in your life when those emotions are negative. Your soul contains your thinker, your feeler, and your chooser. That's all in the area of your soul. You are a spirit, you have a soul, you live in your physical body.
Now, the Amplified here of 3 John, it tells us something here in this verse. It says, first of all, know the will of God, and it says that the will of God for your life as a Christian is to be successful and prosperous in every way. The Amplified says, "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and that your body may keep well". Now, for most Christians, you need to know that that's the will of God. You need to know that it's God's will for you to be successful in every way. If you don't know that it's God's will for you to be successful in every way, then, you know, you'll come to the place where you'll say, "Well, maybe God don't want me to be successful in this area this year".
God wants you to be successful in every way. There is something about an anointed Christian, that when an anointed Christian shows up, they touch something, it just works, amen? It's almost like, who was that? Joseph. It's when you show up, you impact the places that you show up. Joseph showed up in the jail and the jail began to prosper. Joseph showed up in Potiphar's house and Potiphar house began to prosper. What happens to a Christian who will finally come to the place of realizing that, "I know it is the will of God for me to be successful in every way"? There's not a way in this life that God doesn't want you to be successful in, except for sin. He doesn't want you to be successful in sin, amen? And so, overcoming it, but not involved in it. And so, he says even as your body, I know that your body keep well.
Second thing that he wants you to know is his will is that your body keep well, so when sickness comes on your body, what is he saying? Resist it. Resist it. When you know the will of God, what's the purpose for knowing the will of God? So, you'll resist it. See, if you don't know that something's the will of God, you might just go ahead and allow it to happen, but actively resisting something is so important as a Christian. You recognize, "This is not God's will". So, what happens? You begin to actively resist it. You say it out of your mouth. You don't just sit there and just flow with it. You actively resist it. It is not God's will for you to be sick and to die of some chronic disease, so resist it actively.
You know what most people do? When the sickness and disease come and they don't understand why it comes, they go ahead and line up with it. "Well, maybe God trying to show me something". Or, "Well, you know, maybe this is happening for a reason". And here is the worst thing you can do, "Well, maybe I did something to make it happen". That's the worst thing you can do is, "Maybe I did something to make it happen," and don't you ever find yourself in that position where you are blaming yourself for something that the enemy caused, or maybe something, bad decision or something you caused. What you do in the middle of a hard time, instead of blaming yourself, what you do is you say, "You know what? I'm still the righteousness of God, and God's solutions are available to me, and God's healing is available to me, and I choose that". Amen?
And so, then he says, "All of this is gonna happen even as I know your soul keeps well and prosperous," so what he says is if you're going to experience success in all of these different areas of your life and if you're going to experience your body keeping well, he said here is the key: your soul. So, as goes your mind, will, and emotions, so goes your life. Your mind, will, and emotions, so goes your life. Now, let's define emotions, and I'll show you precisely where Satan is trying his best to deal with how you feel, because the way you feel can take you to places. Let's define emotions: emotions are feelings on the inside caused by pain or pleasure to move you in a direction, so good emotions will move you in a right direction. Negative emotions may move you in a wrong direction. Let me say it like this: when you have godly emotions, they will move you towards the will of God for your life, so self-control is a gift from God to try to move you in the place where God has designed for your life.
Think about that, every time your feelings are under control, they don't get to take you, when those negative emotions, when you control them, they don't get to take you where they want you to go. So, negative emotions are designed to take you away from the plan for your life. It's designed to take you away from the blessings. You know, every time you get emotional and you let your emotions have their way, you let your feelings have their way, you know, you're upset with somebody and you're gonna go grab a gun and you're gonna let your emotions have their way, they're trying to take you somewhere away from God's will for your life. Rather than you allowing that to happen, you take control over that negative emotion. You get godly emotions so it can take you to the very purpose for your life, so now you got a choice.
Somebody says, "Well, this is not a big deal, the way I feel". It is; Satan is hoping that you will allow negative feelings and emotions to govern your life, and he hops on those negative feelings and emotions like a wave, and he rides you completely away from the will of God. And then, once you come to yourself, you realize, "How did I get here? How did I get here"? Your emotions, like a wave, escorted you to that place, but now what if you can control and harness those negative emotions to get godly emotions so those godly feelings can take you to the place closer to the will of God and self-control now has taken you closer to that designed place that God wants you to be? So, we talk about spiritual things, and we should, and we talk about the healing of your body, and we should, but nobody wants, and nobody in church wants to talk about how you feel.
We wanna cover it up with religiosity. "Hey, brother, how are you feeling today"? "Well, this is the day the Lord has made". I ain't ask you that, I asked you how you're feeling today. "Well, I'm not moved by how I feel". I understand that, but see, nobody wants to deal with how you feel. You wanna come in here and, "You know, well, have you forgiven such-and-so, such-and-so for what they did"? "Well, you know, God is good". I ain't ask you that, have you dealt with your emotions? Have you dealt with how you felt? Have you dealt with this loved one that's died? Have you dealt with the divorce you just experienced? Have you dealt with the rape or the molestation that you've gone through? Have you dealt with the hurt and the pain emotionally? Have you dealt with the betrayal? Have you dealt with the stuff? Because the longer you allow those feelings to stay, the more potential they will have to conceive something that will be born into your life, so we're gonna deal with the area of your mind, because how you think will determine how you feel.
How you think determines how you feel. If you're feeling a certain way, you have to check out what you've been thinking about. Your mindset is gonna determine your emotionset. What's going on in your mind is gonna determine what's gonna be going on in your feeling. Remember, we said, let me go through that progression one more time. What are you exposing yourself to? What are you exposing yourself to most of the time? What do I mean when I ask that question? What are you seeing? What are you hearing? What are you around? What are you exposed to most of the time? Your exposure is going to produce the way you think. If you're exposed to wrong words, it's gonna produce wrong thinking. If you're exposed to godly words, you're gonna go to godly thinking or godly feeling. Godly thinking is gonna produce godly feelings, so it starts with exposure. I'm exposed to something good, I'mma think something good, I'mma feel something good. I'm exposed to something bad, I'mma think bad, I'mma feel bad.
And so, that whole progression is like this: whatever you're exposed to determines what you think, whatever you think determines how you feel, whatever you're feeling determines the decisions you make. And a lot of times people make emotional decisions. Whatever decisions you make determine what actions you take. Whatever actions you take will determine the habits you create. Whatever habits you create will determine your character. Whatever your character is, it's gonna determine your destination in life, and so where you are today happened by what I just said. You know, somebody say, "I don't know how I got there". I just showed you how you got there. It started off with what you were exposed to. Then it determines your thinking. It determined how you felt. It determined the decisions you make. It determined the actions you took. Your actions made your habits. Your habits made your character. Your character landed you in the destination where you are in right now. Good or bad, you like it or don't like it, you are where you are based on that progression, 'cause that's the progression of life.
Now, you can come up with excuses or try to change the rules, but that's just how you got there, so if you don't like the destination, if you don't like where you are right now, change your character. You don't like your character, change your habits. You don't like your habits, change your actions. If you don't like your actions, you can go ahead and change your decisions. You don't like your decisions, change how you feel. If you don't like how you feel, change how you are thinking; and if you don't like how you're thinking, check out what you are exposing yourself to that's causing you to think that way, causing you to feel that way.
Do you follow what I'm saying? I just don't want us, like, to be Christian people, and the devil comes to destroy our lives, and we just don't know what to do, so we just kinda respond religiously with no intelligence, 'cause Satan has a board meeting trying to plan strategy of how to destroy your life. And he takes advantage of what you've been exposed to, to try to ruin you, but praise God for the Holy Ghost. That you can stand up in the devil's face, and you can say, "I know I feel like this, but, Mr. Devil, you don't understand. I can harness my feelings. I can control by emotions. I can change the way I feel, so I might feel like this just for a moment, but hallelujah, there's the Word of God that can change the way I think, the way I feel, and the decisions that I make," does everybody understand that?
So, let's look at Romans 8:6. How, then, do I adjust my mind? You know, somebody says, "Well, how do you get depressed"? You're depressed because there's something weighing heavily on your thinking. There's something that's weighing heavily on your mind, and it's been on your mind all day, all night, all week. If you don't deal with that, wow, depression is going to show up and give birth to something. You gotta deal with that. You've gotta deal with that. For the most part, I don't want my people to go around the only way you know how to deal with stuff is getting angry, getting somebody told, slapping somebody, cussing somebody out. No, giving people a piece of your mind, when I told you, you need all the pieces of your mind. You don't need to be giving none of your mind away. "Give you a piece of my mind". Don't do that. Keep all the pieces, baby. Keep all of 'em.
All right, verse 6, "For to be carnally minded is," what? "Death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace". I wanna use one of the definitions for death referring to separation, separation from God. You know, death literally is when you separate your spirit and soul from your body. Your body is in a casket and your spirit and soul is, if you're saved, is absent from the body and present with the Lord. So, let me read it like this, "For to be carnally minded is separation from God," you see that? To be carnally minded is separation from God. Now, what is a carnal mind? It is a mindset that is dominated by your sensory mechanisms. It's a mindset that's dominated by your senses. You see something and what you see is now dominating your life. You hear something, what you hear is dominating your life. You smell something, and it's dominating your life.
The sensory mechanisms were given for us to enjoy this life, but we're not supposed to be dominated by our senses, does that make sense? He gave 'em to you as a gift so you can enjoy life, but not to be dominated by it, so, you know, to be carnally minded is death. That means, you know, you panic. Because of what you saw or what you heard or, you know, you read something about they're gonna put you out your house, something like that. Don't be dominated by your senses. Your senses are gonna make you aware of things that are going on in life, in the physical world, but just because you're aware of those things don't mean you have to be dominated by them, because you serve God, amen? And everything is gonna be subject to change.
Turn to your neighbor and say, "Your situations are subject to change". There is nothing you're going through today that has to stay the same, so to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is what? And what? Peace. To be spiritually minded is life and peace. And how many of you know the Word is spirit? Let me show it to you right quick, John chapter 6:63. The Word is spirit. So, somebody says, "Well, how do I become spiritual-minded"? You got to expose your mind, your thinking to the Word of God. Now, today, really, I wanna show you how important it is to get in that Word. Expose your thinking to the Word of God. What happens when I expose my thinking to the Word of God? I mean, you're here at church to expose your thinking to the Word of God. You can't afford to waste your time coming to church and I preach popcorn sermons. I need to expose you to the Word of God. It's an opportunity, one hour, to try to expose you to the Word of God and getting you to think according to the Word of God.
John 6:63 says, "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you," he said, "they are spirit, and," what? "They are life," so you never waste your time spending time in God's Word. You never waste your time spending time in God's Word, so why is that important? Because spiritual-mindedness will produce emotional stability. Spiritual-mindedness. Why is getting in the Word so important? It produces a spiritual mind. Why is getting in the Word so important? That Word which produces spiritual thinking is gonna produce the spiritual feelings. That's where it starts. It's I can harness my emotions. I can control my emotions because I expose myself to the Word, which causes my thinking to be spiritual.
And let me tell you something: spiritual-mindedness equals spiritual maturity. You're not spiritually mature if you can't control your emotions. Some lady says, "Well, I'mma get married". And she comes to counseling, and they say, "Well, make sure you're not unequally yoked," and you go to looking for a old dude who's saved, but it's a little bit more than being saved. You wanna make sure, ladies, you're searching out for some guy who is spiritual. And somebody says, "How do you find a spiritual guy"? 'Cause he can say the prayer? 'Cause he can say, "Now I lay me down to sleep"? Well, that does not determine, see, he can be fake a couple of hours. This guy can open the door for you, he can be nice to you, he can even quote two or three Scriptures while y'all eating dinner.
Don't be deceived, baby. What determines? It's when you see how he handles his emotions in the middle of a hard time, because his spiritual mind determines his spiritual maturity. You're not mature just because you've been saved a long time. You know, you're mature 'cause you can control your emotions. I'mma say this over and over again, the weakest man on the planet is a man who cannot control his emotions. That's a weak man. You're not a strong man 'cause you, you know, you just kinda get crazy and start throwing stuff and cussing people out and jumping out the car and beating people up with your fist and shooting somebody. "I'm a man. You don't do me like this. You're a fool, you're a little punk," 'cause you can't control your emotions, you can't control your emotions. An out-of-control man is the weakest man.
What are you gonna do? You can't think. You can't make decisions. The only thing you can do is get outta control, do something stupid, and end up in jail or dead thinking that's how you were supposed to respond as a man, and that's deception. You're not supposed to respond like that. I'm believing God that our men will become men of great temperance and self-control, demonstrating real manhood in serving other people. That's what it is, you're not a real man because you got, you know, five girlfriends at one time, and you're taking advantage of all of them, and you think you're, you know, man Mandingo, and you then have about three, four kids at the same time, and you go around, "Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha".
You should learn from your mistakes. You should learn that just because you've heard it wrong, and hey, listen, I know what happens when you're dependent on people and they don't tell you the right thing. They don't lead you right or maybe nobody was there to tell you the right thing. That's why God's not judging us and beating us up, but like I said a couple of weeks ago, once you've gone through something and you know better, don't come out with the same stupid. It's one thing to know better and you continue to do the foolish thing. It's another thing to know better, and now that you know better, you can do better. Nobody expects for you to do better until you know better, but you gotta know better, which is why I'm teaching this series. Sometimes you just have to get down on, you know, where people are and start talking to 'em about what they go through every day, and we all have emotions, but sometimes those feelings get us.
Sometimes, you know, those feelings come up. And listen, I am not trying to tell you you're gonna be flawless in your dealings with emotions. What I'm trying to tell you is even when you miss it sometime with your emotions, at least you know you could have dealt with it. That's all I'm saying, I'm not, yeah, yeah, you're living in this human body, but you're not just human. You're born-again, and when you're born-again you have something that the world doesn't have. You got help from the Holy Spirit. You got supernatural power. You can do better when you know better, so continue to learn so you can do better and do what you know, amen? Now, let's go ahead and get started with this sermon today. That's enough reviewing. Some of y'all say, "Started? He ain't started yet"?
All right, 2 Corinthians chapter 5, verse 7. Let's look at this in the King James and the Amplified. 2 Corinthians 5 and verse 7. King James and the Amplified. You can control your feelings, and you can enjoy good emotions, and that's the thing we wanna be able to share with other people: good emotions. Why should your family have to just deal with your bad emotions? Share with them some good emotions, hallelujah? Wake up in the morning with some good feelings. I'm tired of you waking up in the morning, "How you doing"? "Grrrrr". All right, " 7 (For we walk by faith, and not by sight.)" That word "sight" doesn't just mean what you see. It means sensory mechanism, all your senses. We walk by faith, not by our senses. Look at this in the Amplified. He's talking about the things that appear, in the Amplified. He says, "For we walk by faith we regulate our lives and we conduct ourselves by our convictions or belief respecting man's relationship to God and divine things, with trust and holy fervor; thus we walk not by sight or appearance".
So, just because a circumstance appears to be, a certain thing in your life, or this thing appears to be this way, he says we're not gonna walk just by appearance. You can be in the middle of trouble and not be troubled. We walk by faith. We walk by what God's Word has to say, and if you're walking by what God's Word has to say, you don't allow the circumstance to govern your walk. Somebody says, "Well, I know God loves me". Well, how do you know "God loves me"? "I just feel like he does". Well, wait, wait a minute, what happens one day when you wake up and you don't feel his love? No, you're not supposed to, you know, know he loves you because you feel like he loves you. You're supposed to know he loves you because the Word says he loves you whether you're feeling that way or not. Somebody say, "I know God loves me 'cause the Word said so".
All right, look at 2 Corinthians 4:18. 2 Corinthians 4:18. Somebody say, "What are you doing"? I'm doing operation on your emotions this morning, pouring that Word on the inside of you, amen? 'Cause your life is gonna be calm, your life is gonna be cool, and your life is gonna be collected, amen? You're not gonna have this life where your emotions running everything. You wake up in the morning, you think, "My bills need to be paid by Friday". It's Monday morning, and you're starting to worry about Friday. You got to learn how to enjoy Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, okay? And you enjoying Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday is probably gonna get you closer and closer to your needs being met, versus being worried all week long, taking you farther and farther away from your needs being met, why? Because you're trusting God in this life. You have something the world doesn't have.