Just as there are two sides of a coin, many times there are two sides to a person. There’s the side that is shown to the world, the personality that other people see and interact with. Some of the time, this is an accurate portrayal of the “inner” person, or the other side that only that person knows within their own heart and head. These two sides do not always match up, as much as the person tries or would like for them to. Somehow, some way, it seems nearly impossible to always reconcile them.
Sometimes the outer personality is a defense mechanism, portraying exactly the opposite of what the inner personality feels, simply to protect. Sometimes the outer personality is kind and encouraging when the inside personality is screaming against it, the unfairness of a past matter. Sometimes the outer being does something rude, while the inner being regrets that the tongue wasn’t quelled or that the action had been thought about more. Sometimes the inner just wishes those feelings on the inside matched those feelings on the outside in the most positive and God-like manner possible. Why is there war with one’s self?
“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but the sin living in me. I know nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.” Romans 7:15-18
“So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Romans 7:21-24
On a separate, but related note, why does God give us desires that we may never see come to fruition? Is it to increase our faith? What good are feelings if things like resentment, bitterness, cynicism, fear, or even longing if they continually eat away at a person? It’s obvious through the scripture that God doesn’t care as much for our “feelings” or “comfort”, but more so for the state of our hearts and our ability to follow Him above all else (see story of how Jonah felt about going to Ninevah; or how about Joseph in the Old Testament who was sold into slavery by his brothers and then falsely accused of an affair with his master’s wife and put into prison–surely he felt discouraged at some point during his trials). I need to remind myself many, many people have it a lot worse than I do.
Feelings can be good for the most part, but sometimes I just wish my feelings would sod off.