- Virginia Brown
Go through the Motions
Our faith often wanes. Our regenerate hearts grow cold, even numb to the things of God. We know we need to “feel” Christianly, but so often those feelings aren’t there. This experience happens to me regularly. This week, specifically, has been a “Lord, where are my godly emotions?” type of week. When this happens, what are we to do?
Going through the motions—doing something out of routine or duty, not desire or passion—gets a bad rap in Christian circles. It’s understood to be a fake approach to the Christian life. Matthew West even has a song about the emptiness of going through the motions. Certainly, our Christian life needs to be more than going through the motions, but some days, weeks, or years, going through the motions might be all we have to offer. That’s the place where Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane. Though Jesus did not desire to go to the cross, He still obeyed the Father’s will (Luke 22:39–46). In some sense, even Jesus went through the motions.
Even when we don’t have any “gas” in the tank, God still honors obedience. Keep showing up. Keep going through the motions of sanctification. Pray. Evangelize. Study Scripture. Attend church. Live selflessly. Encourage others. Sometimes we “feel” like obeying; other times we don’t. Godly emotions come and go. Nevertheless, the Lord calls us to obey in all seasons. By going through the motions in emotionally dry seasons, we model our Lord and glorify His name.