Validate your feelings…are you kidding me?

You’re having a great time with your family at your favorite restaurant. The hostess sat you at a table directly across from the bathroom with your two boys, ages 10 and 12. They ask and you give them permission to use the restroom. A few minutes later, a waiter comes out of the bathroom heading directly towards your table. He looks ticked. When he arrives, he begins to chew you out. Your kids are flushing toilet paper down the toilet causing water to flood the floor, which he has to clean up.
How do you feel? Confused, my boys wouldn’t do that? Embarrassed, my boys could do that? Anger, at your boys for doing such a thing and the waiter for treating you so horribly?
You get up from your pleasant evening and head to the bathroom. Once there, you discover your boys using the stalls properly. It’s not your kids who are stuffing the toilet with paper. Now, how do you feel? Relieved, as a smile comes across your face?
I’m sure there are other feelings arising within you, but let’s stick to your initial reaction. Were your initial feelings justified? No! They were based upon faulty information. If your kids had gone and returned from the bathroom without incident, your pleasant night would’ve continued. Yet, because of faulty information and your reaction to it, your evening became one big teachable moment.
I don’t believe just because someone “feels” something that they those feelings must be validated. “I’m angry and you have to accept that fact.” No, I don’t. The definition of validation is to be “sound; just; well founded; well grounded in logic or truth.” What if your anger is not based on truth? It is no longer sound, just and well founded. So why validate it?
Feelings don’t need to be automatically validated. They do need to be acknowledged so you can discover what is underneath – the root issue of what is happening. What is causing these feelings? Is it righteous? Is it true? In the above situation, you felt embarrassed and angry until you checked out the cause and discovered your emotions to be unfounded.
Some have put feelings above truth. The Bible never does. In fact, faith often runs opposite of the way we feel or think. Faith tells us to do something that is in our best interest, whether we feel like it or not. In this situation, faith tells us to slow down, process what we’re hearing and feeling through the Word (Biblical worldview) so we can listen to Jesus and let Him show us how to respond.
I like what one person said, “You can’t feel your way to faith.” Your feelings will catch up as you by faith put what Jesus tells you to do into action. At this point, I’ll be more than glad to validate your feelings.

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