All in my feels | Part I – Identify

May 17, 2023

I tend to be the kind of person who gets ‘all in my feels’ pretty quickly. All it takes is for a favourite character on a TV show to leave or something sappy and dramatic happening in a movie for me to be set off.

My emotions, and the intensity to which I feel and express them was a point of mockery and misunderstanding for all of my childhood. Everyone else just wasn’t as affected by things as I was. It seemed like everyone could carry on with their lives when things happened, whether it be to them or the people around them, whereas my life would come to a screeching halt. I was overwhelmed and crippled by what seemed like the smallest of things. It’s not that others didn’t care, it just seemed like they were able to deal with things a lot better than I could.

It wasn’t until a few years ago that I realised that feeling things deeply can actually be a gift from God. Funny isn’t it? Often times the things we resent the most about ourselves, the things inside us that come under the most attack or scrutiny, is often some version of God’s unique fingerprint on our lives.

Feeling is a gift

It might be hard to wrap your head around the idea of ‘feeling’ as a gift. Being the person in the room who is easily overwhelmed, constantly burdened and often in a state of overthinking, is difficult. It is true though, your sensitivity is a super power, whether you’ve realised it yet or not.

From here on forth, I’m going to refer to myself and my friends who resonate, as “feelers”.

Am I a feeler?

So, how do you know if you have a spiritual gifting, or if you just have a few emotions sometimes? There are actually a few ways to identify whether you are a feeler or not, because let me tell you, once emotions are involved, things can get a little murky. So, it’s good to just figure out where you’re at. It is possible that we have a gift, it’s also possible that we have to sort some things in our lives out. Hiding behind titles and terminologies is no way to deal with life. As someone who is sensitive spiritually and emotionally, I don’t get to fall apart on a whim. I still need to be able to function and navigate life in a healthy way.

Feelers tend to feel God and other people’s emotions. It’s not just feeling sympathetic or even compassion. They tend to feel things as if it is actually happening to them. For example, when I spend time around someone who is feeling depressed, whether their facial expression or the tone of the conversation reflects it or not, I tend to walk away feeling as if I am suddenly quite depressed. I won’t be able to explain why necessarily, but I will feel it. And it feels so real, it feels as if it is me feeling this way. The key pointer to someone being a feeler is the internal interruption of emotion. It feels so internal, that you don’t think to look at the external as the source.

It’s in the little things

Now, depression was a pretty big example, but when you can identify big moments, it becomes easier to see it in the little things too. This particular gift can also look like having a really bad feeling about something. You can’t explain why, but you just feel really uncomfortable in a situation, a place or even around a person.

Or maybe you just have a feeling that someone isn’t as fine as they said they were. You laughed, chatted and maybe had a great time having coffee together, yet you couldn’t shake the feeling that there is potentially a problem. These moments are especially hard when there isn’t any tangible evidence to back up why you feel the way you do.

It is also usually very difficult to function when those things happen, when things just don’t feel right. I used to be completely consumed by such feelings. I couldn’t think or focus on anything else until I’ve figured out why I felt the way I did.

Is there something wrong with me?

So many times in my life I honestly thought that there was something really really wrong with me. No one else seemed to think about things as much as I did. I was often told that I care too much and that I should let things go. The problem was that no one could actually tell me how to let things go. Every option they offered felt impossible.

Gut feelings

I didn’t realise back then that my little internal feelers were being interrupted by God. He was giving me an insight that no one else in the room had. I can’t tell you how many times I had bad feelings that I ignored, and almost every time I regretted not listening to what I used to call “my gut”, but who I now call, “Holy Spirit”.

It’s important to mention that, a ‘bad feeling’ and fear can feel quite similar. Sometimes we’re just afraid to step out or to do something we know we need to. You will get to know the difference as you journey with Holy Spirit. As He leads you, you’ll start to recognise the promptings within yourself. When to lean in, and when to shake it off.

Godly interruptions

Feelers are interrupted by God within their emotions. When you sit with someone and suddenly feel really exhausted, when you’ve actually felt pretty well rested all day, God is revealing a secret to you. You’re getting a sense of where someone is at, so you can partner with God to do something about it. When you really start paying attention, you may even realise that there are certain emotions that surface in you when you’re in specific environments. God is showing you what is going on in the spiritual atmosphere so you can partner with Him to bring a change.

There have been times where I have even experienced God’s heart for people. I remember being on a mission trip about 2 years ago. On the last evening we were ministering during an evening church service and we, as a team, prayed before the service for all the attendees. As I sat there, my heart started to ache for all the people coming who had been in bondage, and I really got a sense that God wanted to set people free. It felt as if my heart broke and I wept throughout the whole prayer time. My team mates asked if I needed prayer, seeing the visible distress on my face, but I knew I didn’t. This wasn’t me… this was the Father’s heart. And I am only to steward it.

Joyful intercession

When God allows you to pick up on something in the atmosphere, the people around you or even within His own heart, it isn’t to burden you. It is most certainly not for you to walk hunched over, consumed by the worries of the world.

I have started to look at these moments as beautiful opportunities to partner with God to do something special on the earth. When God shows us something, we need to give it back to Him. The gift of feeling is closely related to the gift of intercession. You pray differently about things when you feel it so internally.

When the feelings come and they overwhelm us, we need to pray until there is joy. We need to give to God what belongs to Him. The worries and burdens of this world and the people in it, do not belong to us. Thank goodness!

It is a gift

That’s where the disconnect with thinking of feeling as a gift comes in. It’s when we carry the burdens ourselves that it feels impossible to think of any of this as a good thing. But when we start to look at these moments and insights as deposits straight from Heaven, it tends to change the perspective a little.

Emotions aren’t always celebrated within the body of Christ. Our culture tends to live in the extremes of either over-indulging or shutting it down completely. There is a place of balance though. A place where we can walk this out and still function in our day to day lives.

Now hear me on this, not every feeling and emotion needs to be indulged and I will share more on how to walk this out healthily, as well as how to mature in your gift in my next blog. For the moment, I hope that this helps you look at your emotions in a new and different way. Perhaps it’s not so bad to feel so many things. Perhaps it means that you are lucky enough to be privy to a few of God’s mysteries.

So my dear friend, don’t brush off your emotions. If God wanted us emotionless, He would’ve made us without them. If all you get from this is the fact that you’re not alone, then we are already making headway. Who you are is a gift to the body of Christ. You are not too much, in fact, you are exactly what we need.

Identifying feelers

  • Feel God/other people’s emotions. Will feel it as if it is them. (someone else is depressed, they start feeling depressed)
  • Probably been told you’re too emotional or too sensitive
  • Feelers are often interrupted by God – will suddenly feel something and wonder if they are unstable
  • Can’t always explain why they feel something, they just do
  • Hard to function when things just don’t feel right
  • Lacks emotional boundaries
  • Pick up on spiritual moments most people miss
  • Powerful encounters with God’s written and spoken word.

3 Responses

  1. Wow Lelane… how beautifully written.. it was about a year ago that I found out that I am a Highly Sensitive Person at a very late age.. it has been a game changer as there are labels l have lived with all my life.. Now I can slowly embrace that that is How God specifically made me..
    Thanks so much for writing this blog… not a lot written about this in South Africa.. so I am so so excited.. FREEDOM is at hand.. lots of appreciation for you Lindi .. ❤️

    1. Thank you so much for taking a moment to share your thoughts! And yay for celebrating and embracing who God made you to be! All the best for the journey… may the Lord use you mightily right where you are 🙂

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