Joyce Meyer - Understanding Your Emotions
Probably more than anything, people talk about how they feel. People come for prayer, "Well, I feel, I feel, I feel." And we all have feelings but the thing you have to understand about feelings is they are ever-changing. They're fickle and so really, because I feel something that so first lesson, everything you feel is not true.
You may feel like, for example, that you're no good and yet if you read what the bible says, you have unbelievable worth and value to Him. You may feel that you can never be forgiven for the things that you've done wrong in the past but if you would learn the truth, the truth says that He forgives and forgives and forgives and forgives and forgives and forgives and forgives and we are to let go of the past and press on to the things that are ahead.
You may be forgiven of a sin and still feel guilty, but that guilt that you're feeling is actually a lie because if the sin has been removed, there's nothing there to feel guilty about.
So you really need to start asking yourself, "Is this thing that I'm feeling," that in many instances we're basing our life on, "Is this feeling true? Does it agree with the Word of God? Or is this just some random thing from somewhere that maybe I've had for a long, long time and I need to check out the source and see if I'm believing a bunch of stuff that's not really true"?
Do you know that when you believe lies it keeps you in bondage. And there's people in here tonight, you believe certain things that really aren't even true. And that's why it's so valuable to hear the Word, hear the Word, study the Word, study the Word, because Jesus said, "I am the way, I am the truth, and I am the life."
Today, the world is trying to tell us that there is no absolute truth. Well, there absolutely is an absolute truth. And Jesus is it, amen. So let's look at a couple of Scriptures. "So then those who are living the life of the flesh catering, to the appetites and impulses of their carnal nature," you know what an impulse is? It's just like, woop! Oop! It's just this kind of sudden urge, you know, like, hoo, chocolate!
"The impulses of their carnal nature," which means the part of us that has not yet been crucified, they "Cannot please or satisfy God, or be acceptable unto Him." Now that does not mean that God doesn't accept us if we have any carnality in our lives but it means that kind of behavior is not acceptable to God. That's not how He wants us to behave.
Okay, so let's think about the word "Catering" for a minute. I spent a lot of years catering to my flesh and I'm sure some of you have had the same experience and may still be in that situation. You may not even know that you're doing it. And what that means is every time you feel that you wanna do something, you go do it. Or any time you don't feel like you don't wanna do something, you don't do it.
We cater to our feelings. We feed the flesh and the more you feed anything, the stronger it gets. And the less you feed anything, the weaker it gets. So, by the help of God, through the grace of the Holy Spirit, we need to learn the Word, know what's the devil, know what's God, and we need to use the fruit of self-control that every one of us has.
Don't ever say you don't have any self-control, "I just can't control myself." Yeah, you can. You may not want to, but you can. And so the more we go with God and don't go with the flesh, the weaker, the weaker, the weaker it gets until it really no longer can have any control over you.
Catering. There are people who have catering businesses. I have hosted catered events. And you know, if you go to a buffet, you don't get any specialized service. You get your own plate, you put your own food in it. You carry it to your own table, you get your own napkin. They might bring you some water. You eat and you pay. And the bill is probably not too major.
But if you go to a five-star restaurant where you've got three waiters catering to you you get up to go to the bathroom, and you leave your napkin on the table, and when you come back it's folded into this cute little duck.
I mean, everything is specialized, everything is personalized. When they come to the table, they call you Mr. and Mrs. You're treated like a king. You don't have to get your own food. You don't have to clean the table up. See, when you go to the buffets, they even want you to clean your dishes up, but you're gonna pay a higher price for the catered meal.
Now come on, there's a message here. When we cater to our flesh, so here's the thing. We're either gonna pay now or we're gonna pay later. So we either pay now by saying, "No, I'm gonna go with God on this and if my flesh wants to have a screaming fit, just let it have it." See, there is a real thing that we feel in our flesh when we don't give it its way.
How many of you know, you understand that feeling? You know, like, if Dave and I have had a argument and I think he's wrong but God puts it in my heart that I need to go and apologize, oh, my flesh hates it. Hates it. I cringe. And I, like, always want Dave, when he is wrong, to say, "I was wrong." But he doesn't do that much.
Do any of you have men that they just don't like that terminology, "I was wrong," you know? It seems to be a male thing, I don't know. And so that can be really hard on my flesh. And you see, years ago when things were hard on my flesh, I had not developed an ability to keep my mouth shut. C'mon, is anybody in the room tonight?
I mean, I could not keep my mouth shut. So every time I didn't get my way and my flesh felt uncomfortable, I would start something. I got somebody who's with me, right down here tonight. But oh my gosh, God has changed me so much. Oh, it hurt. It hurt really bad.
But see, the point is, is you can either suffer in a way that will always keep you in bondage and you keep suffering and you keep suffering and you keep suffering, or you can suffer temporarily and get to the point where that thing no longer has control over you and then you're free.
1 Corinthians chapter 3, verse 3. Paul was talking to the Corinthian Church. They operated in the gifts of the Spirit. They were supposed to be the cream of the crop. And he says to them, to the Christians... let's just say that he was having a meeting similar to tonight. His crowd probably wasn't this big 'cause he was in a cave somewhere but let's just say that he was having a great meeting and everything was going good there in the cave and Paul looks at 'em and says, "You are still unspiritual."
See, I'm nicer than Paul was. "You are still unspiritual, having the nature of the flesh because you're under the control of ordinary impulses. Because as long as there is envy, jealousy, wrangling, factions," which is strife, "Among you, are you not unspiritual and of the flesh, behaving yourselves after a mere human standard and you're acting like (unchanged) men?"
See, being born again means that there should be a change. Now, everything doesn't change overnight, there's no doubt about that. The Bible says that we are changed into His image, little by little, from glory to glory.
So if you just got born again last night, which almost people answered the altar call last night. If you just received Christ last night and you haven't seen any big change in yourself, don't worry about that at all. We're good, we're cool with that.
But if you've been saved 20 years and you don't see any change and you're still going around the same mountains you went 20 around years ago, and you still can't keep your mouth shut and your mind is still full of junky stuff, these guys are too good for that, I can tell.
C'mon, let me tell you a secret. I preach at whoever smiles at me the most. Now, you know, my call is to help the believer mature and grow up. Because I was a christian for a long time. Let me rephrase that. I was a miserable christian for a long, long time. It's one thing to be a miserable sinner, it's another thing to be a miserable saint, amen?
So something should happen when we receive Christ as our Savior. We're not supposed to stay the same. I see changes still in my life all the time. At the end of this year, I will not still be the way I am right now.
And I'll tell you, if you come to this conference and if you sit here for all four sessions or if you only come to one session or whatever, and nothing changes, then it was a waste of time. Don't waste your time, you don't have enough time to waste anymore. We don't just hear the word, with the help of God, we apply the Word.
"Knowing these things, blessed are ye if you do them," Jesus said in John 13. We're new creatures. The Bible says, "Put off the old man and put on the new man."
Now, emotions are so fickle. Did you ever say to somebody, "You are so fickle"? And when you say that to them, what you're actually saying is I cannot depend on you, you are one way one day and another way the next day. And we have to understand that emotions are fickle. They change without any notice at all.
You can go to bed, feeling like you wanna do something the next morning and wake up the next morning and you don't want to do it at all. You don't feel like doing it at all.
I had that happen to me yesterday. I walk every day, several miles, and I actually really love it. I really miss it when I can't do it. And when I do my conferences, I can't do it. And I came here a day early to do something at life church and so this time I'm here for 3 days so I'm really wanting to get home and walk again.
Well, normally, I won't walk on Saturdays when I get home from my conferences, because I'm just really tired. And so Thursday night, I said, "When I get home on saturday, Dave, I think instead of eating out, I'm gonna go home and walk first and then we can pick up something and eat at home."
And he said, "Okay." Well, when I got up Friday morning, I was still good for that. I mean, that's, you know, no, Thursday night I was still okay. Then Friday morning, I got up, this morning, and I was kind of tired and I thought, "Oh, I don't know if I feel like walking on Saturday."
And then later on in the day I started feeling a little bit better and I said, "Yeah, you know, I am gonna go home and I'm gonna walk on Saturday." And so I finally just said, "I think we just better wait 'til Saturday and see what happens there."
Now see, I can do that with something like that 'cause that's not a life-altering decision but there are some things that you cannot afford to do that with. There are some things that you gotta set your mind and keep it set and no matter how you feel or don't feel, you gotta go ahead and do that thing.
Feelings disappear when you would like to have their support. And they appear at times when you really wish they wouldn't. We would love to feel like exercising, like cleaning out the garage. We would love to feel like going to work or paying the bills. But those feelings refuse to show up and support us.