Our brains create a fascinating chain of events when faced with a problem. Mentally choose to perceive a problem in a positive light, and you'll trigger a neurological response that releases a feel-good hormone into your system, which then opens up all the creativity and learning centers of your brain, which helps you to quickly find a good solution to that problem while enjoying the whole process as it happens.
Conversely, you can choose to perceive a problem negatively, triggering stress hormones which close up your creativity and learning centers, slowing down your reasoning skills, while heightening your aggression and self-preservation responses. So who of us naturally defaults to the negative response? Pretty much everyone. Who even knows that we have a choice?
The revelation that faith is based on a mental choice, was a huge game-changer for me. God speaks a lot about the heart in the Bible, and I, like most Christians, mistakenly assumed that it meant I had to “feel” God all the time, otherwise I wasn't a good Christian. When faced with the need to pray about an urgent situation, I'd often end my prayer in discouragement because no surge of spiritual elation had overcome me even though I was doing my best to believe. God really had heard my prayer, but I’d nullify the little faith I had with my defeated attitude. If my prayer wasn't answered, I was sure that it was because I hadn't felt faith while I prayed, meaning I was a sub-par believer, killing any motivation to pray again.
God is not anti-feelings — He just doesn't want us to wait for feelings as a sign of faith. What He wants is for us to use our heads and create faith by choosing to believe. That is raw and unadulterated faith. Feelings follow later, and sometimes only much later. They really don't determine anything when it comes to raw faith. They're immaterial. But raw faith is the raw material for miracles.
Faith that reasons is what Abraham, Gideon and others used when they stepped away from their emotions, took stock of what was happening and basically said, “Wait a minute. If God promised this specific thing, and I'm obeying what He requires, then He is bound by His own word to answer me just like He promised.” That was the reasoning that pleased God then, and still pleases God today.
Their mental choice to hold onto God’s promise created faith, not some sort of euphoria. And that mental choice of faith kept them in a mode of openness and willingness to learn and be led by God. They had eyes to see opportunities because God gave them a peace that undergirded their daily lives as they went through the process of persevering in prayer. The emotion of peace was God-given, the joy of being grateful every day for His provision and guidance was also a gift from Him.
When we choose to see every problem with God’s eyes, our minds become renewed and all the toxic, negative imaginations of the devil are swept out. God’s natural, biological changes wired into our brains kick in, but more than that, heavenly forces are set in motion to actually alter and rearrange physical problems and turn them into victories.
God didn't create you to live in a constant state of stress and anxiety. Renew your mind by choosing the right chain of events to happen. Miracles will happen both in you and around you. Choose intelligent faith.
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:2 MEV)