I drink coffee every morning. It's an addiction almost. Horrible if you think about it, to be so dependent on something to the point where I really don't care what form it comes in, so long as it has caffeine and it keeps me awake.
I heard a guy this morning while he was getting his coffee say the following: "No I don't need the sweetner or creamer, doesn't matter to me how it is I drink it, hot cold, whatever, just need it to have caffeine and be coffee." That got me thinking.
How often do we pay attention to where we are when we worship, when we pray, when we study the word? The bible tells us that we shouldn't deny the fellowship of believers (Heb 10:24-25), however, you don't have to be at church to meet up with God. It doesn't matter where we are, what we're doing, or who we are with, if we call on His name, He is there with us (Jer 29:12-13).
I don't need to be in the sanctuary to be praising Him, I don't need a worship leader to be singing in order for me to praise Him with my lips. If I were to have accepted Christ in the quiet of my own home by myself, it doesn't make it any less of a decision if then if I had done it in front of a crowd of a million people. Granted, I should tell someone so they can scream in joy with me and so I can get plugged in. What I'm getting at is this whole idea of a feeling, of depending on emotion instead of faith.
Many times as Christians, we lose sight of who God is. We know His word, but we forget who He is in His word. We get so caught up in this feeling, that we forget what faith is. "Faith isn't about how you feel, it is about acting on what you know, despite how it is you feel" - Timothy Keller I can be at work and He can speak to me, I can be in the car and He can speak to me, I can be getting coffee in the morning and He can speak to me. It doesn't matter where I am, my ears should always be perked up, waiting for Him to speak.
When God wants to serve a cup of His finest coffee, to rejuvinate my soul and lift up my spirits, it doesn't matter what cup He serves it in. I don't need the creamer or the sugar to make it sweet, it doesn't need anything added. His word is the same past, present, and future. His grace is sufficient. I don't need a feel good sugar coated environment to make it more "spiritual."
In his book, "The Screwtape Letters" (a must read!), C.S. Lewis describes a danger that many Christians, especially new believers face: "Desiring their freedom, He therefore refuses to carry them, by their mere affections and habits, to any of the goals which He sets before them: He leaves them to "do it on their own". And there lies our opportunity. But also, remember, there lies our danger. If once they get through this initial dryness successfully, they become much less dependent on emotion and therefore much harder to tempt."
We can't be so dependent on emotions. When we depend on our emotions to guide us, we are depending on ourselves, and in that dependence, we fail to depend on God. Jer 17:9 "The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?" Now see if you follow me on this thought, the devil may very well use the church itself, or that "feeling" as a way to get distracted. Rather than focus in on God Himself, and deny myself feelings and emotions, I'll wait for that yummy fuzzy feeling, and gauge my salvation or my "spirituality" on it, and not on fruit, not on His word, and not on what He has said to me. I'll lose sight of Him and look only to my emotions. We live by faith...not sight..
Feelings won't lead you anywhere. The Spirit will. Let's not be so dependent on our feelings; let's be sensitive to God's feelings (His spirit) and be open to receive in all places. Be ready both in and out of season (2 Tim 4:2).