“How are you doing Father?” I had just dropped off the car to be serviced and was walking back to the Retreat Center when this question entered into my conversation with God.
So often in my journey with the LORD I share my heart, feelings, requests and He patiently listens and leans in with compassionate love. But as I was strolling back home on a beautiful spring morning here on the tip of South Africa, it occurred to me, how often do I listen to His heart, do I ask how He is feeling?
Over the years of ministry I have often asked others, “How are you doing? How are you feeling?” Ministry is listening to the heart of others and journeying through painful seasons with them. But I can’t tell you the blessing it is when someone will intentionally flip the question and ask, “How are you doing?” Even the question and the heart felt thoughtfulness is salve to the hurting soul. So I have to believe when we stop and ask our Father how He is feeling we must bless Him just by asking.
As Scripture testifies our Triune God has emotions. He is a person and just as we are created in His image (Gen. 1:27) with emotions our Creator God is filled with emotions as seen throughout Scripture:
* Love – John 3:16, Jer. 31:3 * Hate – Pr. 6:16, Ps. 5:5
* Grief – Gen. 6:6, Jn. 11:35 * Anger – Dt. 9:22, Rom. 1:18
* Compassion – Isa. 49:13, Mt. 9:36 * Jealousy – Ex. 20:5, Jos. 24:19
* Joy – Zeph. 3:17, Lk. 10:21
We see these emotions listed above in Jesus, who was the exact representation of the Father (Heb. 1:3). When Jesus sheds tears at the loss of his friend Lazarus, when He displays anger at the moneychangers in the temple, when He rejoices with his disciples returning from a time of ministry, we see the emotions of the Father.
Yes, there is a definite difference from our emotions as His emotions are perfect with no stain of sin. But never the less our God is a person who feels deeply. I believe it is good to ask the Father and search out His emotions concerning issues in our personal lives as well as the culture we live in.
To seek out the emotions of the Father will have a transformational impact on our hearts. He is longing for us to listen to His heart, to know His thoughts and feelings about all that is happening in and around us. He has even given us a gift to help us uncover His deepest emotions and that is the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14:16,26). The Holy Spirit dwells in us and continues to reveal the truth of Jesus, the Living Word.
The promise in Scripture is that if we keep asking, seeking and knocking on the door of heaven to know the heart and emotions of the Father He will answer us with Holy revelation of who He is and how He feels (Lk. 11:9-13).
As I walked home listening for the Father’s response to my question, I felt His pleasure thanking me for seeking out His heart and reminding me of this unshakable truth, “I love you my son!”