Today’s Author: Gary Olson

I’m sitting here between events of the Tokyo Olympics thinking about the young people competing in swimming, gymnastics, fencing, rowing, volleyball, and so many other sports. Some win some lose. Most never make it to that level. Many live on very different levels. I remember some years ago watching an interview on television with a young woman in her twenties. She was addicted to street drugs. She said she would often prostitute her body in order to have enough money to buy the drugs she thought she needed for her well-being. She was on a very different level indeed! She was miserable!

A friend suggested she visit a pastor the friend knew and took her to meet him. By happenstance, he was a Lutheran. The pastor listened to her story and empathized with her. The young woman liked him and at his invitation set up a schedule to talk regularly. She said the pastor began introducing her to the Christian faith—the presence of God in life and the love of God in Christ Jesus.  The pastor was down to earth. She was drawn to it and kept returning. 

She tried, with mixed results, to get away from using drugs. At one session with the pastor, she said, “Sometimes it’s so hard to stop. I get this feeling that I need drugs and would do anything to get them.” The pastor told her: “When that happens to you, don’t do what you feel, do what you believe. Then call me.”  It wasn’t long after that she agreed to go into treatment. While in treatment, she emphasized that the words she heard from that pastor got her on the road to recovery and are keeping her in recovery.

Feelings just are. They are part of being human. Feelings are not good or bad. What’s important is how we handle them, what we do with them. If a certain feeling is leading us to do something that will harm ourselves or others, then we need our faith to temper that feeling, to provide a guideline for our behavior. So, when a feeling is leading you to an inappropriate place, believer in Christ, “Do what you believe not what you feel. Then call me.” 

Well…call your pastor.

Lord, in all we do, say, think, and feel may we find ourselves on the side of your will. Amen

“Mid-week devotions are authored by members of our community.  If you are interested in creating a trio of reflections to be shared on an upcoming Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday contact Pastor Peter.