“[Some], like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.” (Mark 4:16–17, NIV 1984).
My Musings – Yesterday, I shared a question posed by a reader of my musings and my response. Here is their follow-up question. “How do you, Steve, feel his saving grace?” Following is my response.
Thank you for your continued interest. Before answering your question directly, let me share a few general thoughts on the topic of feelings. While it is true that the Spirit testifies with our spirit that we are His children (Romans 8:16), we must be careful about relying too heavily on emotions and feelings. They can be tricky. They aren’t the most reliable guide as to whether one has or has not been the recipient of God’s saving grace.
After accepting Christ, one may not feel any different. But if they genuinely meant it, they are different. They are changed. They are a new creation. They have been born again. This change is not based upon feelings. It is based upon the ability of God to do what He said He would do and His reliability in keeping His word. The Apostle Paul put it this way, “I know whom I have believed [our genuineness], and am convinced that he is able [His ability] to guard what I have entrusted to Him [His reliability] for that day.” (2 Timothy 1:12).
Now, back to your question. How do I feel His saving grace? I was a pre-teen when I accepted Christ. Initially I struggled because I did not “feel” saved. But as I’ve grown, there is a peace, contentment and confidence that I have even during difficult circumstances (we’ve had our share) that is hard to otherwise explain. I believe that this is His Spirit testifying with my spirit. That does not mean that I never waver in my faith or have doubts. It ebbs and flows. But He does not. Even when I do not feel these things, I know that He is just as able and just as reliable as He was when I first believed.
I hope this helps. God bless!
My Advice – To my fellow believers. Please share your own “feelings” on this topic.
No, I would not give you false hope
[In these] strange and mournful day[s]
But the [Father] and child reunion
Is [more than an emotion] away.
–Adapted from “Mother and Child Reunion,” by Paul Simon.