Saturday, May 14, 2016

Basing Decisions on Feelings is Foolish

While my entire upper right side is still very sore from the mastectomy, I’m feeling so good that I think kayaking is not too distant a possibility. So I called my doctor to ask when I could kayak. He emphatically said no kayaking, and he would talk with me at my next Thursday appointment. He said I can walk all I want, but no sitting in the river, and no kayaking. 

I didn’t dare to ask him about the horseback riding trip I’m planning for my daughter’s birthday in early June. I can neck-rein with my left hand, so I’m hoping he won’t object to that.
But as long as he said walk, walk I did. I meandered all over the place logging eleven miles for the day. I didn’t have to worry about dinner, because a very kind friend dropped dinner off for me and bought two of my paintings. I have the world’s best friends.

As often happens at some point during my day, one of the moms I work with who chose life over abortion texted me. Here is a screen-shot of one portion of our conversation. It begins with her telling me about how excited she is about the soon to arrive baby. She looks at her ultrasound picture each day. My response is in blue.

This is a VERY important text, and brings some critical things for pro-abortion folks to ponder.  I met this mom at the abortion clinic, while proclaiming life from the sidewalks. The feelings of the women who go there are distorted by the fright and worries of how to deal with an unplanned pregnancy. They feel their only option is abortion, and they feel trapped in a decision they know is wrong, but expedient. Here is the important take-away: FEELINGS CHANGE. However, once the baby is dead, he is dead. That cannot be changed.   

This mom, like so many we encounter at the abortion center, was astonished by how radically her feelings changed. She went from contemplating abortion to being overwhelmed by love for her unborn child. This is NOT unusual. I see it all the time!

So much of what we do in life is based on feelings.  Just think a moment. How many truly regrettable things have you done, or words have you spoken based on transient feelings? Be honest. A gadzillion if you are anything like me. Then, the feelings change, but often the repercusions rebound on and on like a dagger-laced echo. Yep. Don't pretend you don't know what I am talking about. We have all been there.

And how often do we consider the consequences of our actions/words based on feelings? Even earthly consequences...let alone eternal consequences. Feelings are not to be trusted. Life-altering decisions should never be based on feelings. Our actions should always be based on conviction and truth.

So, where do we find truth? 

Fortunately, the Bible is replete with verses about truth and where to find it. Here is my summary gleaned from 62 verses that use the word truth:
Jesus is the Truth, the truth sets us free, truth guides and sanctifies, God is near when we call on Him in truth, His word is truth, we must not love in talk but in deed and truth, we in Christ are in truth and truth is in Him in us, in Christ we can know the spirit of truth, repentance leads to a knowledge of truth, the gospel of salvation is truth, we walk in the truth when we obey God's commands, knowledge of truth is in accordance with Godliness, those who know Jesus are indwelt with the spirit of truth who counsels and guides them, we understand the grace of God in truth, when we exchange truth for lies we dishonor God, if we say we don't sin- truth is not in us, when we listen to God's teaching we walk in truth, and God's law is truth.

How many of us base our actions of this list of what is true? I know the women who abort their children are basing their actions on feelings and lies, not on this list of what is true.

Pilate famously asked Jesus, "What is truth?" He was exasperated because Jesus would not defend Himself against the accusations lodged by those who arrested him. Jesus replied to Pilate's queries by answering that He was born to testify to truth, and those on the side of truth listen to Him. Clearly Pilate was on the wrong side, and Jesus' claim to deity eluded Him completely. You want to know truth? Listen to God.

The Bible is clear. Jesus is Truth. Believe on Him, and you shall know the truth and the truth will set you free. Or you can listen to your feelings which sift like sand beneath a crumbling foundation.

John 18:35-40

35 “Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?”
36 Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”
37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate.
Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”
38 “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him. 39 But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release ‘the king of the Jews’?”
40 They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.

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