I worry in America we suffer the most from lack of discipline. We eat what we want, wear what we want, say what we want & act like we want, Sometimes to the detriment of ourselves and others. We are largely controlled by our feelings. Instead of letting our feelings be a gauge for something, we let it be THE thing. We don’t exercise because “we don’t feel like it.” We don’t do service things because “it’s not my nature.” We don’t eat right because “we don’t like it.” I am convinced we could follow our feelings into the pit of hell if we are not careful. Instead, We have put the cart before the horse. Feelings were never meant to be the “end all, be all,” but, rather, a guide. You’re hungry and want to eat a whole chocolate cake? So, do you eat a whole chocolate cake? No. You take that feeling of hunger and eat something HEALTHY. You want to punch someone in the throat. Do you? No. You use that feeling to know something is amiss and try to solve it productively. Feels are the gauge, or warning, to us that some action might be needed, not orders to follow. As Christians, we are called to deny ourselves and there is sweet freedom in not being controlled by the whims of our feelings. Recently someone made the point that we find ourselves saying “That was a good worship service” based on how WE feel, if WE get the chills, if WE get an endorphin rush. I admit i’ve fallen into this myself. Problem? WORSHIP IS NOT FOR US. IT’S FOR GOD. So, I began to be mindful when I sang the words that didn’t “hit me,” rejoiced in the melodies that weren’t my favorites, and raised my hands when I didn’t always “feel it.” Why? Because my praise and my actions and even my opinions will not be dictated by my feelings. My praise will be a living sacrifice to God, whether I’m “feeling it” or not. My actions will no longer be dictated by what I feel, but what will bring God the glory. And even my opinions will not be determined by my feelings, but filtered through what God and the Bible have to say. We have to stop letting our feelings be our master!