Living By Faith Blog

Icon

Biblical, battle-tested, real-life help for "living by faith in the Son of God" (Galatians 2:20). — Steve Fuller

How To Get Out Of A Spiritual Funk

Spiritual Funk from Microsoft Publisher ClipartA Spiritual Funk

Friday afternoon I was in a funk.  Feeling empty.  Blah.

I wasn’t tempted by some obvious sin.  I wasn’t struggling with worry, or nursing a grudge.

I was just feeling, well, nothing.

So What’s Going On?

The week before I had preached on how God gives us living hope (1Pet 1:3-5).  And as I studied, it struck me that what gives our lives joy and meaning is the hope we have for the future.

That helped me understand why I was feeling blah.

Try this out.  If you are in a funk, look inside your heart, and ask — are you seeing anything exciting in your future?

I’m pretty sure the answer will be No.

So — whenever we are in a funk, that’s why.  It’s because we aren’t seeing anything exciting in the future.

Dig Deeper

But that wasn’t helping me break out of my funk.  So I dug deeper, and asked – WHY am I not seeing anything exciting in my future?

Then I remembered from that sermon that God gives us hope — hope in the grace we will experience when Christ is revealed (1Pet 1:13).

In other words, at the end of history Jesus Christ will be revealed, and all who trust Him will receive grace — the grace of beholding Jesus Christ, worshiping Jesus Christ, knowing Jesus Christ forever.

So if that’s true, then why am I in a funk?  Why am I not seeing anything exciting in my future?

It’s because I’m not doing what Peter calls me to do — I’m not setting my hope fully on the grace that will be mine when Christ is revealed (1 Pet 1:13).

Digging Even Deeper

But I still wasn’t breaking out of my funk.  So I needed to dig even deeper.

So I asked — why am I not hoping in the grace of beholding Christ?

And then I saw it.

I was in a funk because I had set my hope on something besides the grace of beholding Christ.

In fact, there were three things I was hoping in besides Christ –

  • having something happen that weekend,
  • having a blog site publish one of my posts,
  • I forget the other one.

And I was in a funk because each of them had disappointed me.

The Root Issue

That showed me the root issue: I was trusting those three things to satisfy me more than the grace of beholding Jesus Christ.

The problem was that earlier in the day my heart had shifted from hoping in Christ, to hoping in these other things.  And when they failed to satisfy me, I was left in a funk.

Time To Fight

I could see it was time to fight.

So I grabbed my packet of verses, and started praying.

I turned to God just as I was.  I confessed that I was in a funk and feeling blah because I had been trusting these three idols (Luke 18:13).

I asked Him to forgive me through Jesus, and He assured me of forgiveness (1John 1:9)

Then I asked for the work of the Spirit to help me stop trusting these other things, and start trusting Jesus once again (Mark 9:29; Luke 11:13).

I intentionally turned my heart from these other things, and turned my heart towards Jesus Christ, using God’s Word to help me see Him.

Praying Over God’s Word

I prayed over Rom 10:17 — thanking God that He would use His Word to strengthen my faith.

I prayed over Rom 8:32 — that God will surely give me Jesus Christ, and everything else I need.

I prayed over 1Pet 1:13 — and thought about what it would mean to see Jesus Christ face to face.

I prayed over Rev 21:1-3 — this helped me see even more clearly what it would mean to see Jesus.

What Happened

It wasn’t all that dramatic.  But God helped me taste a little of what it would mean to see Jesus Christ.

I saw, and felt, the wonder of Jesus Christ — His majesty, love, wisdom, justice, and mercy.

And this taste of His glory changed my heart.

I felt hope — living hope.  I knew I had something exciting in my future — beholding Jesus Christ forever.

That hope, that joy in Christ, changed everything.  I felt meaning and purpose.  Energized and motivated.

The funk was gone.

Thoughts?  Comments?

I’d love to hear them.  Leave a reply below — thanks.

If you know someone this would help, email it to them using the “share” button below.  Or use the other buttons to share it on your favorite social media.

If you would like to interact with others who are seeking to live by faith in Christ, visit our Forums page.

If you would like to receive a Saturday email summarizing the week’s posts — subscribe here.  (I will only use your email address for Living By Faith Blog communications, and you can easily unsubscribe at any time.)

And here are some related posts you might find helpful –

 

(Picture is from Microsoft Publisher Clipart.)

Category: Stories from My Life

Tagged:

11 Responses

  1. Wanda says:

    Steve,

    In truth is Christ Jesus. Your honesty before GOD and man reflects what we all feel and think.

    I had a great interview on Friday and am waiting word on the next step. I have been constantly reminding myself that I am waiting on GOD and His plan for me. I even have been reflecting on Job’s confidence, Thou He Slay Me, I Will Trust in Him.

    It is so easy to displace the source of “our” futures. As though the “things” of the world are the be all and end all. Your post reminds me that it is not in the company I interviewed with on Friday that is the source of my all and all. It is in GOD The Father, Son and Holy Spirit that I have All, and so do You.

    GOD Bless You and Yours,
    Wanda

    • Steve Fuller says:

      You are so right, Wanda. It’s God Himself, not that company, that is your all in all. He is the One who will guide, provide, forgive, strengthen, and satisfy — now and forever.

      Thanks for your encouragement, and your wise words.

      In Christ,

      Steve Fuller

  2. Ash says:

    This is being archived in ny personal sin-killing archive for the next time I’m in a funk.

  3. Josh says:

    Wonderfully helpful and clear. I desperately want to do this in my unfunky times too and not be so pleased in the praise of men.

    • Steve Fuller says:

      So glad to hear it, Josh. Thanks for letting me know. And I’m right there with you regarding the unfunky times when I’m caught up in the praise of men. Well said.

  4. Ron R. says:

    Steve:

    I love your honesty. I know you didn’t mean this to be funny, but if you could only hear me when I laughed when you wrote

    “I forget the other one”…

    but isn’t that the truth. Sometime the idols we have just aren’t important enough to remember.

    And, once again this post couldn’t have been more important as I have recently been dealing with a funk. My problem was that I couldn’t understand why. And then it occurred to me that I lost focus on what the future holds. I too, had taken my eyes off the Lord.

    Thanks again for your honesty and for being so transparent to us. I don’t know if you know how much of an encouragement your posts are. Keep up the good work.

    Ron R.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just to clarify Steve- I wasn’t laughing at you- but the fact that so many times I have put up false idols and after I refocus on the Lord I forget what I had idolized. And that just struck me as so funny- because I have done that so many times and for the life of me I can’t remember most of them.

      Ron R.

    • Steve Fuller says:

      You are so welcome, Ron. I’m glad this encouraged you!

  5. Nikki says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you

Leave a Reply

Join 1,832 people who receive each week’s posts by email

Feedback

"AWESOME. Going to mangle this sin tonight with the Promises of God." (Alec)

"I told my friends recently that if I could subscribe to only one blog, yours would be it." (Lyn)

"At last! a blog that deals with serious theological issues from the perspective of glorifying God." (Lorraine)

"I think you are really on to something with this blog. I don’t know of anything else like it." (Doug)

"Excellent comment. Really well put and wisdom that is strangely lacking in much evangelical thinking." (John)

"Thank you -- I needed to hear this. So clear and concise yet captivating." (Stacey)

"Wonderful post, Steve. I thank God for using your posts as trail markers to keep me on His path." (Luke)

"Such a helpful post. I’ve bookmarked it and reread it two or three mornings just this week." (Doug)