If this is not enough to bless us for a lifetime - we also see that the life of God is being poured not just into our minds and wills - but also our emotions. This is a twofold blessing to us. First, we are protected from having our emotions lead us. Too often we find that we are far more emotionally driven than Scripture and Holy Spirit led. We feel a certain way emotionally and we allow that "feeling" to be what leads us. This can be dangerous because I can speak personally of how often I just didn't "feel" like being a Christian in my attitude or actions. This did not come to me in that particular package, because I think it would be far easier to reject. It came to me in a variety of packages. I just don't feel like getting up and having my quiet time. I just don't feel like reading the Bible right now. I just don't feel like witnessing to that person. Then there are the feelings of anger, resentment, bitterness, and a host of other negative emotions that come in dealing with people. One area I don't want to forget in sharing these things is times when desires rise up within me calling for fulfillment. At times those desires run contrary to Scripture, yet if I walk only in my emotional state, I will find myself following those emotions into something that is sin. But there is another way. That way is learning to examine emotions with the Word - and to reject emoitons that will lead to sin and to choices that I will regret later.
When we speak of emotions there is a picture that is very instructive. That picture is the one where we see the difference between being driven by emotion versus being led by the Spirit of God. When sheep are being driven - the one driving them is the butcher. He is driving them to the slaughter house - and ultimately to their death. The one who leads the sheep is the shepherd. When we are driven by our emotions - the world, the flesh, or the devil is most likely in control. They want to drive us through moment by moment feelings that we have rather than by the life of God, which would instruct us in what is right. The difference here is that one will drive us by whatever feeling is dominant in the moment, while the other will help us to discern between actions that are good or bad. We will discern that even though we may have positive emotions immediately by doing something - the long term effects will be much worse. In the same way we may be led by God to choose something that may not bring immediate gratification, yet in the long run will bring great blessing into our lives. Without the Spirit of God using the Word of God to lead us in the way of the life of God, we may make many foolish choices simply because we were emotionally driven at the moment to make them.
There is also a wonderful way that God grants us emotions as well. As we learn to embrace the work of God in our emotions we will have times when we can release ourselves to wonderful emotions as well. Jesus experienced great joy as well as weeping and sorrow in the time He was on the earth. His was a wonderful example of how God works in us, even using our emotions as He does that work within us. Worship is a place where this can happen - having strong emotions toward God as we sing to Him and praise Him. Obedience can yield incredible emotion as we do the will of God and are rewarded for it with a sense that things are good. God may move us to great emotion in prayer - where we have seen in Scripture that people often weep and grieve before God as they intercede before God and let their emotions out before Him. All these are beautiful ways that God works in our emotions. As we are taught by His Spirit of His ways and know Him - these things can be embraced and even help us as we learn to live our lives for His purposes.
How important it is to experience the life of God in our souls - and by that to experience Him in our emotions. We can choose to be driven by our emotional state of mind in what we do. To be driven in this way is a horrible way to live, for our feelings may swing from one extreme to another. To be led by the Spirit involves setting ourselves in a direction according to God's Word - and to submit our emotions to Him. He will help us to know over the course of our lives how to reject certain emotions that would lead us astray, and how to embrace others which will come as He guides us through life.