Elected Officials

Faith Over Feelings


Elizabeth Mallicoat November 01, 2019
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This post was written by TeenPact Student Body Senator Patrick Sullivan of Florida


I’ve sat in a lot of chairs, but none like the one at NatCon 2018. It was Friday night and you could feel the Holy Spirit Moving in the Conn Center. It was a profound moment for the people in the room and a night to remember for myself. 

 

During that time, Quinton Cools spoke. He urged us to not allow our feelings to sweep us away in the moment, but seek to understand what the Lord wanted to teach all of us that night. 

 

Ever since then, I’ve thought about the feeling that many of us may have at TeenPact events. The feeling that motivates you to give up everything for God. That feeling that makes you say to yourself, “I’m going to read my bible every day for the rest of my life and I’m never going to mess up because I will have a burning fire for Christ.” 

 

But once you leave National Convention and return home, that feeling dies down a little bit. You might remember what song you were singing, feel an ounce of the passion that stirred your heart, or just barely feel the same conviction, but eventually, you move on entirely. This has caused me to wonder, what if those feelings were just a trick? What if you shed empty tears? What if you made promises while knowing they would not last? What if you were walking by feelings and not by faith? Trust me, I struggled with all of these questions.

 

I remember at NatCon 2017, I came wanting a similar emotional experience to the one I had experienced before. I kept searching and waiting for it to appear. I tried to push it out in worship by putting my hands up or sitting and praying in my seat. But despite how much I tried, my attempted spirituality did not produce the feeling. 

 

When it came down to it, I wasn’t focusing on God at all. Instead of coming into the week desiring a relationship with God, I sought the product of that relationship. I did not have faith that God would teach me. My main issue was pride. I was thinking that if I had that feeling or emotional high, then I would be more spiritually enlightened. I wanted to feel good about my spiritual walk with Christ.

 

 I later realized that my desire to read the Bible was not based on wanting to be closer to God, but on the basis that I could boast to others that I read my Bible every day. But our God doesn’t just want our performance. The God of the universe didn’t send His son to hang on a cross so that we could feel good about our spiritual lives. He died so that His own could be reconciled to Him. 

 

Ephesians 2:5 says, “even when we were dead in our trespasses, (God) made us alive together with Christ–by grace you have been saved.”

 

Walking by faith and not by feelings is hard. It’s difficult at times to read your Bible when you want to scroll through Instagram. It’s hard to worship God at TeenPact when you may be missing that emotional feeling. But the main question we need to consider do we desire God or the appearance of spirituality? Are we worshipping God so that the “feeling” can be resurrected and our pride can be fed, or are we praising God with love and thanksgiving for His infinite glory and grace? May we be a people who walk by faith and not by feelings.

 

Student Body Senator Patrick Sullivan 


The ideas expressed in this article are original to the author and reflect the convictions and opinions of the author. These views are not the stated beliefs held by TeenPact Leadership Schools.  For more information on TeenPact Leadership School’s Vision and Values, please visit https://teenpact.com/vision-values/.

 

About the Author

Elizabeth Mallicoat

Elizabeth Mallicoat hails from the gorgeous “Aloha State”, but due to growing up as a military brat since day one, she finds it difficult… Read More