God's promises are not dependent on my feelings. In fact, as I've studied His Word, I've discovered that none of God's promises directly include my feelings. I was shocked! This might sound insignificant, but as women, we are emotional creatures, so understanding how God's promises relate to us is pretty crucial. My specific struggle this past year* was one of purity. I had been involved in some sin, and even after repenting of it and focusing on my relationship with God, I still "felt filthy." I read beautiful verses like "Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow." (Isaiah 1:18) Yet in my head, I argued with God, and said, "But I still feel so gross and sinful, and I can't believe that You view me as pure as snow, when I feel this dirty!"
This feeling of dirtiness led me to inconsolable guilt. In fact, a few times I regressed into the sins that I had previously repented of, simply because I felt like I was still the same vile sinner girl.
It's easier to jump back into the mire of sin, if you don't truly believe that God ever rescued you from it.
Choosing the same old sins again led to deeper regret, remorse, and even more feelings of uncleanliness.
One evening while driving home from work, I was singing along with a song that included the prayer, "Help me to trust that this is truth!" That was my struggle exactly! I couldn't believe that God's promise was truth or that it was applicable to me.
"Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." (Mark 9:24)
"If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed."
I started studying the Biblical usages of the words "clean," "cleansed," and "washed." The verses were varied and wonderful. The best part was realizing that being clean is a promise to those who repent. However, feeling clean is not a promise. I think especially for us women, the devil likes to play with our feelings. If he can get us to feel dirty or feel unworthy or feel lonely or feel unlovable, then we'll believe that we are all those things, even though they contradict the promises of God to His daughters.
I found that when I intentionally believed (over and over, throughout the day) and memorized the "cleansed" verses, the feelings started to follow. It was as if I had a bonus blessing on top of the promises of God! He promised me that He made me clean, and then in time, He blessed me with the accompanying feelings. I still struggle with my fickle emotions, but I now have memorized promises from God to combat those devilish lies.
*originally written in 2014
"Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."
The goodness of God led Amanda to repentance when she was a 12-year-old girl, and despite a heart prone to wander, He daily draws her to Himself. She continues to attend Lehigh Valley Baptist Church where she was raised, and enjoys sharing digital art and snippets of what God is teaching her on her Instagram account (@amandaangrrr). When Amanda isn’t working her day-job of managing an insurance agency, she is likely to be found trying a new local restaurant, sipping a coffee delicacy, learning something from a podcast or audio book, or finding an excuse to show off pictures of her nieces & nephews.