“My sheep listen to My voice—no one can snatch them out of My hand.” John 10:28
Trent and Pastor Al were going over their weekly study material when Trent said, “I’ve got to admit that sometimes I feel confused about my Christianity, pastor. I feel like someone wandering in the desert without a compass. It’s not that I want to walk away from the Lord but—”
“You feel lost and uncertain?”
“Exactly. I feel adrift like a boat without a rudder, taken around the ocean wherever the waves and winds direct.”
“I’ve felt that way, Trent. Your feelings are not unique my friend. Most Christians have those feelings from time to time. The only cure I know is to get into the Word and remind yourself what God says about us and how much He loves us. Feelings are never a good rudder, Trent, they are variable and not dependable.”
“For example, have you ever received a text from a friend that sent you into a slump because you thought they were attacking you or perhaps ignoring you?”
“Oh yeah. That happened with one of my best friends once. I was really hurt until we got together and he explained what he meant. Then all was well.”
“Exactly. Your feelings were hurt and you listened to them for awhile before your friend explained himself. So, in that case, were your feelings trustworthy?”
“Not at all. I allowed my feelings to guide me down the wrong path without any facts at all. I was quick to believe my friend wrote something hurtful even though I know he would never do such a thing.”
“Feelings. You fed them and they quickly turned a small ember into a raging fire in your heart. And your friend was not even aware of your feelings.
“More importantly, how many times have we allowed our feelings to take us away from the Lord because we believed a lie or allowed doubt and confusion to guide us along a rough, pot-hole-filled road? Let’s look at the Bible and remind ourselves of who we are in Christ.”
John 10:10-11 ~I came that [you] may have life, and have it abundantly. “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
John 11:25-26 ~Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
1 Peter 1:3-5 ~All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.
John 10:27-30 ~My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me, for my Father has given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else. No one can snatch them from the Father’s hand. The Father and I are one.”
John 6:35-40 ~Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. But you haven’t believed in me even though you have seen me. However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them. For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will. And this is the will of God, that I should not lose even one of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them up at the last day. For it is my Father’s will that all who see his Son and believe in him should have eternal life. I will raise them up at the last day.”
1 John 4:4 ~But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.
Romans 8:38 ~And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.
2 Corinthians 5:17 ~This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
Matthew 11:28-30 ~Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”
“You’re right, pastor, my feelings of confusion and doubt have gone away after reading these verses with you. It’s like washing mud off a car. I feel encouraged and hopeful, just the opposite of what I did feel. Thank you so much.”
“You’re welcome, Trent. God’s word always brings us out of discouraging feelings. And now, the next time a friend of yours feels down, you can take them on the trip we just took. That’s how God works, isn’t it?”
“And I am so glad He does.”