There is a difference between feelings and actions. There is no prerequisite emotion required to step into the Presence of God, and there is no demanded state in which we must present ourselves.
He just desires that we come to Him.
Now, emotions are important. They are one of the ways we have been made in the Image of God. But it is important for us to separate what we perceive to be the voice of God from an emotional experience. Emotionalism does not equal the Voice of God or an actual step into the Presence.
The Enemy can use emotions too, and as a master manipulator, he is really good at it. So, when it comes to the experiencing of intense emotions, the presence and authority of Scripture in our lives becomes that much more important—where there is intensity, we need to be steeped in the Word for clarity.
There is no clarity or true discernment apart from the Presence. All Wisdom and Goodness and Holiness reside in Him, so who are we to believe that strong emotions outweigh the voice of God?
Where we are not feeling it is where we should be most conscious of our need for relying on the character, consistency, and unchanging Nature of God.
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)
IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES—not just “in the circumstances where I feel like being thankful”. Thankfulness is not a feeling but a life-posture.
At every moment, pray—not just when I sense God’s Presence. There are plenty of times I don’t get goosebumps or cry or “feel” a tangible Presence. But I’m breathing—and as long as I’m breathing, God is not done using me, and as long as God is not done using me on this earth, my heart needs to be postured to hear from and talk to Him.
Our feelings are not God, so why do we so often allow them to dictate the direction of our lives as if they are?
If someone or something is not God, they don’t get to play God. God can use our emotions as a means of revealing Himself to us, yes, but test your feelings in line with Scripture. This has been a critical practice for me over the past few years, especially as someone who has struggled with anxiety, OCD, and depression. When I say discerning emotions against the Truth of Scripture is important, I don’t say it lightly.
Emotions and feelings lie, God does not.
His Presence in and with us is not a subject to be disputed based on whether or not our feelings say He is present.