Following up on my comments about “feelings” as a guide, I’d like to make one other point.
When I taught in the doctoral program at Westminster West, there were students—pastors, I should note—who would ask, “Prof., what do you feel about so and so?”
Often, to make the point, I’d say (with a smile), “Lousy.” Or, if the response seemed appropriate, “Great!”
Invariably, they’d go on to say something like, “No, you don’t understand. What I’d really like to know is what you feel about. . .” entirely missing my point, or unable to express themselves in any other way.
So, I’d continue, “You got my feelings. I’d like to give you my opinion, or belief, or conviction. But what you asked for is feelings.”
People today use weak language—pastors ought to be the last to do so. No one ever nailed another to the door for expressing his feelings. It’s when you state your convictions that they do!
When pastors are willing to speak in such a weak, namby-pamby way, no wonder the members of their congregations have few, if any, strong convictions. Let’s learn TO STAND UP AND PLAINLY DECLARE WHAT WE BELIEVE OR—BETTER STILL—WHAT GOD SAYS!