Our emotions sway back and forth on any given day or hour for that matter. Our thoughts and feelings are so unreliable and inconsistent which makes it all the more necessary to place our emotions at the foot of the cross and allow them to be redeemed and sanctified through the blood of Christ and the Word of God. Christ wants us to be unwavering in our belief in who He is and not be swayed by the world around us. God desires to sanctify our emotions so He can demonstrate His steadfast love, grace, and mercy through us to the lost and dying world.
Previously this year, I did some studying on the topic of emotional freedom. Needless to say, God showed me much on this subject, and I had trouble gathering even a little of it to share (Emotional Freedom Through the Life of Peter). Such is the case today as we consider how God sanctifies our emotions. Having set aside Sunday’s this month to glean wisdom from excerpts from other writers, I want to also designate this day to some excerpts from the book Feelings and Faith: Cultivating Godly Emotions in the Christian Life by Brian S. Borgman. May you be blessed and challenged by these words.
The Starting Point for Emotional Sanctification is God’s Word
“If our emotions are to be sanctified, if our emotions are to be conformed to the image of Christ, then we must have a grasp on what the Bible says. If we are going to successfully cultivate our emotions for greater godliness and put to death those destructive, ungodly emotions, then we must have a handle on what the Bible says about them. A biblical theology is foundational for us if we ever hope to understand our emotions and grow spiritually. A commitment to the sufficiency of Scripture must undergird our approach. A confidence in the grace of God is a prerequisite if we are to change. Once that commitment and confidence are firmly in place, we can begin the journey with the expectation that God will teach us, prune us, and grow us” (22).
Knowing God Sanctifies Emotions
“If we do not have the truth of God’s character firmly fixed as foundational to all our thinking, then all effort in trying to obey God and sanctify the emotions will amount to our chasing our tails, ending in frustration. We must know who God is. Bruce Ware states, “To know this God, and better to be known by him (Gal. 4:9a), is to enter into the security and confidence of a lifetime of trust in his never-failing arms.” The theological North Star by which we will navigate the rest of this book is this: the most important thing about any one of us is what we know about God and that we know God” (69).
Conscience Effort Through God’s Word Results in Emotional Sanctification
“If we consciously make an effort to renew our minds through the Word and Spirit, we will find that our love for the good, the true, and the godly would increase in proportion. Elliot concludes, “With the renewal of the mind comes a new way of feeling and new reasons for feeling. A Christian world-view will ultimately transform our emotions” (170).
Jesus went out with His disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. And on the road He asked His disciples, ‘Who do people say that I am?’
They answered Him, ‘John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, one of the prophets.’
‘But you,’ He asked them again, ‘who do you say that I am?’
Peter answered Him, ‘You are the Messiah!’ Mark 8:27-29
Jesus Messiah, help us in our journey to have our emotions, thoughts, and feelings reflect You. Sanctify every part of our minds, emotions, feelings, and thoughts. Have Your own way Lord!
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