There was an old worship CD on which Carlton Pearson states, “You can be emotional without being spiritual but you cannot be truly spiritual without involving your emotions.”
This is problematic. It’s a beautiful sentiment to be sure and a true statement in my book, but it’s problematic because we in the western world have this hurdle called logic. Emotions, and pain, aren’t logical. Logic and knowledge are great when it comes to building roads, bridges and buildings, not always so when sorting through emotions.
With inner-healing ministries being so much more prominent than they were 15-20 years ago and the explosion of the internet people can “know” all kinds of stuff.
This is a problem
People wonder, “Why do I still have trouble getting healing when I know so much? I have read this book and gone to that seminar. I can tell you how my issues started.”
How much you know might be the problem. We see it all the time. People come to our events and they nod their heads in agreement because, well, they “know” that. It is perfectly logical. They have reasoned through their past and come to logical conclusions about how they arrived at their emotional and spiritual state. They are waiting for me to get to something they haven’t heard before, something they don’t know yet.
Paul confirms our problem of knowing in 1 Corinthians 8. It’s about food sacrificed to idols but the principle still applies. He says,
“1 Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that “all of us possess knowledge.” This “knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. 2 If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. 3 But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.”
“If anyone imagines he knows something, he doesn’t yet know.” That is the rub in this whole thing. God always knows something about our heart that we don’t yet know.
Like Adam and Eve
Two years ago, I went to a week of the Leader’s School at Catch the Fire Toronto. It took me two days to stop just nodding my head in agreement to the statements the teachers were making. I have learned so much ministering at Shiloh Place that it was easy for me to do it. But I did that without opening myself up to the possibility that I was missing something. My emotions and pain were taking a backseat to knowledge and logic. God nudged me and said, “Hey, you think you are receiving but you’re not.” I began to pray constantly that I would hear with my heart, that Holy Spirit would lead me. I told my reasoning brain to relax a bit, it wasn’t going to fix any problems in the emotion realm for me. Then things started to happen.
In the garden, Adam and Eve partook of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (read Genesis 3). That knowledge led them to fix a problem. The problem is that they fixed a problem that wasn’t even a problem. As you can see from my sentence, their fixing just made more problems. Seriously though, the real takeaway here is that they attempted to fix a problem they were not equipped to fix. However, using their new-found knowledge, this line of reasoning made sense to them. But theirs was a spiritual problem, not a physical one.
We both had the same problem. We had enough knowledge to know something wasn’t perfect but not enough to correctly diagnose and fix it. Fortunately for me, the Helper Jesus sent was there to let me know I didn’t know. Not so for Adam and Eve.
Check Your Head
Now, let me interject here that I am not a “check your brain at the church door” person. I think lots of damage has been done due to that mentality. However, I am a “let Holy Spirit lead” person.
The information we share at our events is good information. It is meant to give us an understanding of how issues early on in life affect our faith journey and our relationships. But then it’s time to allow Holy Spirit to lead. God knows our hearts better than we do. God gives us revelation and insight that often surprise us in these situations.
This is a testimony from a recent event is an example:
… I kept saying, how am I going to resolve this when all of my loved ones were gone. How can I be healed? How can my emotional rollercoaster be fixed? Until the time of forgiveness with each parent came. Some clarity started to come. I began to have some understanding of my mother’s helplessness, as she had gone through her own things which were passed on to me. Realizing how we were both struggling with the little child inside of us. As I forgave and expressed how I felt with each of my parents, I began to feel some relief.
While trying to figure it all out in her head, she was at a loss, she didn’t understand. She doesn’t state it here but Holy Spirit led her into an emotional release during ministry which was followed by understanding (knowledge of what the issue was). Before that it was just locked up pain.
Open Your Heart
Our knowledge, our fig leaf if you will, can become a smokescreen that keeps us from being vulnerable and open. When we have already solved the problem, we don’t have to be open to our pain being touched by God. We end up leaving the garden with our pride intact and our existence a mess. We come with an opportunity to grow in intimacy but fear and pride distance us from God and the ones we love.
I encourage you to not get stuck in the knowledge zone. Don’t let what you know keep you from being led into a breakthrough moment and true understanding from God.
Father, I pray that I will never know too much. That I will always be humble enough to allow you to show me what I can’t see. And when my head won’t get out of the way, help me help it to take a break and relax.