About Me

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I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio

MISINTERPRETING GOD?
Hunches and Bad Feelings
"I have no feelings on that!"
part one of two

Most of my life I have tried (I think) to comprehend God’s will for my life, and for ministry, and for living my life as a husband, a father, and as a person in general. I believe I have misread God’s several times in my life.

One particular point of conventional spiritualist's wisdom is the idea that God's hand can be discerned by the feelings a situation creates. "I feel this is right for me to do today." is an often used comment we hear. While you should perhaps feel good doing the right things, and feel bad about doing the wrong things, your feelings or emotional state at the time doesn’t mean God is making a statement to you in come kind of code, mixed in with the situation that you are currently in.
God's hand, His presence in an event, is discovered (we're told) by the feelings of serene peace, joy, love, and/or closeness to God that we feel. If it makes us happy, if it makes us feel close to God, then it is of God. If it's frightening and repellent, God cannot be in it. (Dan Phillips)

Do we MISCONSTRUE, MISINTERPRET, MISREAD GOD?

"Reading providence is a fool's game, yet it never lacks players." Dan PhillipsDiscontented with Scripture, yearning for something God never promises, countless Christians read feelings, circumstances, events, hoping to discern God's personal coded messages in them. They may not use tea-leaves and chicken gizzards, but they no less are acting as psychics rather than divines. The results can be devastating and enslaving.

Most Christians have a genuine desire to know the will of God for their lives. Saul want to know God’s will in a matter. He was so discontented over this matter that he finally went to a soothsayer. He thought God might work through the soothsayer.

Its amazing how Christians see what God is doing in their lives by means of feeling and emotions and circumstances and events that come into their lives.

In my own life, there have been so many events that have been distasteful, bitter, painful reversals taken place in my life, and in ministry. My first natural reaction at times seem to be that of the disciples when they saw Jesus walking on the water. They knew it was Jesus, but they perceived Him as a ghost. (Mark 9)
It was Jesus the disciples saw; it was not Jesus they perceived. What they experienced did not mean what they thought it meant.More than we would like to admit we want to read into our experience something Christ is saying to us.

When I was asked to leave a staff position at a church, I perceived that this termination of ministry was a reflection of the Lord’s heart toward me. Okay Lord what is it that you are trying to tell me? Boy I really felt bad. While thinking the Lord wanted me to be on the church staff, and I really believed I was doing my best, and then I was asked to leave, or the work was not working out so well, etc. "God are you telling me that you are displeased with me." You know the feeling?

Then you go to another place, another job, or another ministry, and the experience might be the same. Then you really might begin to say, "Okay Lord, why are you disappointed in me?

Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant Proof Checked by Charity Whisnant
Footnote:
Today is my son Eric's lst Wedding Ann. He and Leslie are doing great.
Talked to my sister Ellen last week. She is taking care of my mother, who is 85 years old.