Christian Living Life Issues

A Little Nagging Feeling

Written by Patti Greene

It’s so easy to pray when a crisis is looming or when we have a huge problem, but what if you just have a little nagging feeling that something’s not right? You might be questioning a church doctrine, feeling a little uncomfortable about where your child is going Friday night, or just wondering if a friend might be talking about you behind your back.

These “small” areas of concern can pop up at any time or at any place. They can occur at a party, in a job interview, in church, or in a business meeting. While these unsettling feelings may or may not be as major as a marriage falling apart or a serious accident, they are important to God. And, they are worthy of our prayers. Many people assume that they shouldn’t bother God with small “insignificant” concerns, and they reserve their prayers only when there is something big that requires His wisdom, skills and resolutions. That is unfortunate.

If you are like me, the first thing I do when I encounter a little unsettling emotion is I try to rationalize the feeling away. I wonder if it is just me feeling that way due to my personality or insecurities. Others may try to ignore those feelings. But, some may really want to know why they are encountering that “on-and-off-again” gnawing feeling over an inconsequential person, event, or emotion.

Back in our early marriage, we were on our way one Saturday morning to purchase a new home. We prayed about it, had our appointment all set up with the new home salesman, and all we had to do was to sign on the dotted line. While we felt “pretty sure” buying this house was a good thing to do, we decided to pray specifically that morning about it. We prayed that the Lord would stop us from purchasing this house if it was not in His will. Of course, in my mind, I could not fathom any way our decision would be changed. Our appointment was in 15 minutes. We lived 1.5 miles away from the sales office.  We only lived a few streets over from the babysitter where we were going to leave our 2-year old daughter. What could go wrong?

As I was driving home from dropping our daughter off at the babysitter’s house, a car slammed right into the side of my car rattling me to no end. It was my fault. I failed to notice that the cross street had a two-way stop – not a four-way stop. Immediately, I knew that we could not go through with the purchase of this home. My husband and I could not ignore the fact that we just prayed for the Lord to stop the purchase. This car accident seemed a big enough reason to call the salesman and tell him we changed our mind.

This isn’t the best example to use because purchasing a home is a big decision. And, while most situations are not as cut and dry as this one, all of our decisions or areas of concern should cause us to reach out to God. Let’s ask Jesus to call upon our Heavenly Father on our behalf. We need our Lord and Savior with us to know HIS mind in all matters – big and small.

There are incidents when we know something is wrong because our moral upbringing, values, or Biblical understanding has been engrained in us. If that is the case, we should ask the Lord to give us the courage and speed to run from that situation. We need His strength, His help, His protection, and His Word to convict us so much that the only relief is to get out of whatever ungodly pursuit we are involved in. It could be an unhealthy relationship, a “feeling” it might be time to change jobs, or a time to seek out a specialty doctor.

Other times, we just can’t pinpoint why something isn’t right. In these situations, we need to have a heart-to-heart with God. Maybe it is because we are too judgmental, selfish, or stubborn and the Lord needs to work in our hearts to weed out some of our character or personality flaws. Maybe an uncomfortable feeling is to show us we need to change something within ourselves and our own spirit.

If we honestly, seek out the reasons why we are feeling this way, we will be opening up our hearts to receive what God has to say to us. We may need to talk to a mature believer to help us. God may want to work on our pride or some other character trait, or he may just we wanting to move us to the next level in our walk with Him.

As a side note, some character/personality traits God may want us to work on are us being less:

  • Argumentative
  • Arrogant
  • Bossy
  • Critical
  • Gloomy
  • Hot-tempered
  • Jealous
  • Materialistic
  • Scared
  • Self-centered
  • Shy
  • Stubborn (the one my husband says is the main one I need to work on!!!)
  • Timid
  • Withdrawn
  • JUST TO NAME A FEW!

The bottom line is that when we feel something isn’t right, it is easy to keep things as they are and just keep pushing those feelings aside so we don’t have to face them. However, no matter how hard we try to push the nagging feeling away, they are still there and can pop up at any time. The best approach when you feel something isn’t right is to:

1. Ask God why you are feeling a certain way, and ask Him to show you why you are experiencing that “something isn’t right feeling.” Occasionally an immediate decision needs to be made, for example, if you find yourself in a dangerous situation, leave immediately. Maybe you need to break up with that boyfriend you are having sex with. Maybe you need to leave that job that is asking you to be unethical.  Maybe you will need to find a new church if the preaching isn’t Biblical.

2. Read the Word of God and earnestly ask the Lord to fill you with His Holy Spirit so you will be able to see the situation through Jesus’ eyes.

Trust Jesus! Crosses from Hobby Lobby. Photograph taken by Patti Greene

Trust Jesus!
Crosses from Hobby Lobby. Photograph taken by Patti Greene

3. Find a quiet place where you are all alone to unload both your little nagging concerns and your colossal concerns. Be accessible to God through passionate praying by being reflective and intense in praying. It takes courage to get into a prayer-closet.  It is in our prayer closet that we will hear the secrets of our Heavenly Father through our praise, worship, confession, and time spent seeking Him. Oh, what a blessed spirit we will have when we receive a fresh revelation from God. Listening to God with our innermost being and with all our heart places us at His disposal. And, with time, our prayers will change so we will not seek what we want or need. We will be seeking what He wants and needs from us. It is such a joy when we learn to wait on His voice, labor with Him in prayer, and leave our quiet time with the confidence that He has spoken and everything is under His control

Blessings Always,

Patti Greene

Bible Quotation and Verses:

“The Word of God, the Bible, is our sole and final authority in all matters of faith and practice. Instead of being some heavenly ‘answer book’ to support our selfish desires, it is God’s standard for our lives in helping understand His Person and Program.”

James D. Devine, Author Find God’s Will for You. Page 111.

For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.1 Timothy 2:5-6

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.1 Peter 5:6-7

Prayer:
My Heavenly Father, thank you for sending your son Jesus who can go to You on my behalf and plead for me. Lord, thank you for caring about everything that concerns me – my big and little thoughts, cares, and impressions. Give me the wisdom to know I can come to you for everything. There is no concern that is too small for you to care about. Give me the time, energy, and desire to give everything I own and everything I am to you. Use me to help others and to be a vessel for you. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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About the author

Patti Greene

Patti Greene is the author of three outstanding devotional prayer journals, Answer Me, Anchor Me, and Awaken Me and a book titled "Christian Caregiving: Practical Advice for a Happy Ending." Patti earned a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and pursued graduate studies in religious education and library science spending two years as a second-grade teacher. After spending 12 years as a stay-at-home mom, Greene spent 18 more years as a school librarian in St. Louis, Missouri and Houston, Texas. When not writing books or blogs, Greene spends her time caregiving, reading, researching, and hanging out with her family and friends. Patti and her husband have three adult children and five grandchildren. Visit her blog at GreenePastures.org.

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