Tuesday, April 18, 2017

"I Will"

"I Will"                     

     It wasn't that long ago in Western culture that you could ask someone how he was feeling, and perhaps receive a noncommittal response.  "How am I feeling?  To be honest, I haven't had time to think about that.  But I'll tell you what.  If I have a chance after I make sure there will be food on the table today, I'll consider that and let you know!" 

   "I will take heed to my ways" (Psalm 39:1).

   Life primarily involves "I will" rather than "I feel."  This does not discount the fact or importance of emotional and physical sensation.  It matters how we feel, both to God and ourselves (and also to those who love us).  It just does not and cannot matter most.  Those whose actions flow from feeling rather than conviction will never achieve consistency regarding either peace in the heart, or performance with the hands.  This particularly applies to spiritual matters.  God grants many moments of gladness, and calls us to serve Him accordingly (Psalm 100:2).  However, the Christian life also involves feelings of sorrow and disturbance.  "My sorrow was stirred" (Psalm 39:2).  Our Heavenly Father calls us to trust and obey Him on both happy mountaintops and in sad valleys.  Thus, "I will" rather than "I feel" must always remain paramount in our determinations to honor, trust, and obey the Lord.

   "It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure" (Philippians 2:12-13).

  Note the Apostle Paul's clear affirmation of the truth we consider - "to will and to do."  Our doings are meant to flow from our willings, which themselves originate in the Holy Spirit's motivating work in our hearts.  By His presence and enabling, we can fulfill the will of God regardless of how we feel.  Some of the greatest experiences of true fulfillment occur when we join Paul in emphasizing choices of the heart rather than feelings of the emotions and body.  Our present existence in a fallen world demands that we must install "I will" as the governing influence of our doings, in response to God's gracious working in us.  Great peace awaits as we recognize and respond to this Truth that flows against the deceptions of modern culture, but with the designs of our Lord's eternal purpose in Christ.

"I will love Thee, o Lord my strength!"
(Psalm 18:1)

Weekly Memory Verse
   But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
(II Corinthians 3:18)

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