Which Goes First?
Have you ever been in a situation where you knew the right thing to do but you didn’t FEEL like doing it?
Take forgiveness, for example. When someone has wronged or hurt you, you know that Biblically the right thing is to forgive, but sometimes you may FEEL like you want to nurse the grudge a little first.
Or what about this one? It’s time for your weekly volunteer ministry but you don’t really FEEL like going this week?
I think most people can identify – FEELINGS aren’t always trustworthy, are they?
Some years ago, I was working at a camp alongside a woman who had recently come to live in Canada. As it turned out, we had a mutual acquaintance – an elderly man who had attended the same church as her. In her lovely lilting accent, she told me about her relationship with him before he went home to heaven.
“Grandfather G was very dear to me,” she said. “When I came to Canada, we made an agreement. I would clean his house for him, and in exchange he shared his wisdom with me.”
She then proceeded to tell me a story he had once told her. It was so simple it was almost childlike.
“One day,” she began, “Grandfather G told me about 2 friends who went on a journey through the forest. One of the friends was named FACT and the other’s name was FEELING. For much of the journey, FACT and FEELING were able to walk side by side and converse as they traveled, and enjoy one another’s company. But at certain points in their journey, the forest crowded in close.
One of them had to take the lead.
When FEELING went first, they quickly became lost and entangled in the forest.
As they journeyed, they learned that in order to travel safely and well, when the forest became thick and the way was less clear, it was necessary for FACT to take the lead.”
I admit; I kind of brushed the story aside as a quaint and somewhat dated-sounding children’s story, but in the years since, I have found that underneath its simplicity there is a profound truth that has come back to me over and over again.
When I don’t FEEL like forgiving, but the Bible says, “Forgive one another”, I know that I must let FACT take the lead or I will become entangled and tripped up and lose my way.
When we don’t FEEL like serving others, and we don’t FEEL like going to our ministry, it’s good for us to put FACT in the lead and take another look at what the Bible says about loving and serving others, caring for those in need, and about keeping God as our priority.
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TRAINER: L Falk – Staff Team, EDM
SOURCE: Recorded for TAKE2
POSTED: May 2018