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Feel: The Power of Listening to Your Heart [Paperback]

By Matthew Elliott (Author)
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Item description for Feel: The Power of Listening to Your Heart by Matthew Elliott...

Overview
Many Christians simply aren't experiencing the abundant life. A focus on "doing your duty" and living by reason can leave us feeling dead. Our passion needs to be restored to live the life that Jesus came to give us. Matthew Elliott takes a critical look at what we've been taught by our culture and churches about controlling and ignoring our emotions and how some of the great thinkers of our modern world got it all wrong. The Bible shows something completely different - how God intended that we live in and through our emotions, which are good things that God created for us to feel. Along the way, Matthew Elliott provides tools to help readers understand their emotions and equip them to grow healthy feelings rather than destructive ones.

Publishers Description
Many Christians simply aren't experiencing the abundant life. A focus on doing our duty and living by reason--when what we "know" trumps how we "feel"--can leave us feeling dead. We need to have our passion restored in order to live the life that Jesus came to give us. In "Feel, " Matthew Elliott takes a critical look at what our culture and many churches have taught about controlling and ignoring our emotions. He contends that some of the great thinkers of the modern era got it all wrong, and that the Bible teaches that God intends for us to live in and through our emotions. Emotions are good things that God created us to feel. Matthew helps us to understand our emotions and equips us to nurture healthy feelings and reject destructive ones. So refresh yourself, drink deeply, and learn to live with a new, passionate heart.

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Item Specifications...


Studio: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
Pages   266
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.5" Height: 9"
Weight:   0.78 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Apr 1, 2008
Publisher   Tyndale House Publishers
ISBN  141431664X  
ISBN13  9781414316642  


Availability  0 units.


More About Matthew Elliott


Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Matthew Elliott has a PhD in New Testament studies from the University of Aberdeen and serves as president of Oasis International Ltd., an interdenominational publisher and distributor of Bibles and Christian books. Oasis exists to make Christian literature available at very low prices in English-speaking Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean through local business owners. Matthew and his wife, Laura, live in Geneva, Illinois, with their three children. Find out more about Oasis at www.oasisint.net and Matthew Elliott at www.faithfulfeelings.com.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality


Christian Product Categories
Books > Christian Living > Spiritual Growth > Spiritual Formation



Reviews - What do customers think about Feel: The Power of Listening to Your Heart?

So so  Mar 9, 2010
Thanks to John Frame et al., I was predisposed to favor Elliot's overall argument about the emotions not being evolutionary baggage or a lesser faculty that we should try to suppress and bring into line behind our reason. However, I didn't particularly like his writing style, and I didn't find his discussion lucid or compelling. I wanted to be able to recommend this book as a corrective to hyper-intellectual Calvinists (which is to say, most of us), but I can't.

As an example, chapter 9 contains a section on cultivating the emotions of love, joy, hope, and hate. I found the first three of these to be unclear or contradictory. For instance, he talks about joy as happiness in contradistinction from joy as an intellectual bedrock apart from actual feelings of happiness. In his discussion, however, it seems like he is saying the same thing he says others shouldn't be saying.

On the other hand, chapter 10 was just the level of conciseness, argumentation, and focus that I wanted in the rest of the book. Perhaps Elliot needs a better editor to keep him on message and to help him clarify his arguments.

There is some helpful material in this book, but it did not meet my expectations or clarify the issues for me much. Fortunately, I read it in a discussion group that was much more helpful and interesting than was the book itself.
 
Needed!  Feb 15, 2010
Wow, did I need this book. I admit that I have been duped and brainwashed into thinking my emotions were unnecessary appendages. I was always taught and in turn taught others that "emotions shouldn't be trusted." Or, "emotions aren't fact." Or, "Emotions are the caboose" (meaning the last thing and without practical value.) There are definitely elements of truth in all of these statements but I didn't realize until reading this book that I was missing out on a key tool that God uses to draw me to Himself. My life is richer for reading this book. May God bless Matthew Elliot.
 
REALLY GOOD!  Jan 12, 2010
Love this one. You might find "Faithful Feelings" a bit more helpful as it deals with passages in detail. Truly NOT a waste of paper as many books today tend to be.
 
Feel is Faithful  Jan 26, 2009

http://www.buzzardblog.com/buzzard_blog/2008/11/matthew-elliott.html

Three weeks ago I walked into Borders, eager to spend my $50 gift card. First, I picked up a book on Switzerland (I recently discovered that I'm Swiss). Next, I grabbed a biography of Genghis Kahn (for some reason I find Genghis fascinating). By my calculations I had about 10 bucks left to spend, so I sauntered into the "Christian" isle to see if anything caught my eye and, something did, a book called Feel.

This book surprised me.

Not only did I think a lot, I also felt a lot while reading Matthew Elliott's Feel.

Apparently, several years ago this fella Matthew Elliott did doctoral research on the role of emotion in the New Testament (wish I had thought of that). That research turned into Elliott's book Faithful Feelings, a book that examines the felt experience of Christian living, how emotion was viewed by the New Testament writers in their cultural context. That book was published in 2006. I hope to read it. John Piper calls the book, "The most thorough study on emotions in the New Testament."

Published earlier this year, Feel seems to be a popularization/distillation/fleshing out of Elliott's earlier work. The book is aimed at two significant errors Elliott observes in American Christianity:

1. "we have made our relationship with God more about fulfilling our duty than expressing our passion. We make our spiritual lives into a list of dos and don'ts. We pursue this list more than we actually pursue Jesus. And this leads to a life that eventually becomes tired and numb, devoid of feeling, dead."

2. "we have become indoctrinated in the belief that emotions are unreliable, dangerous, and bad."

From his study of Scripture, Elliott's book builds upon several key ideas:

* "our emotions were given to us by God to drive us to our best"
* "emotions are among the most logical and dependable things in our lives"
* "emotions give us a window to see truth like nothing else"
* "the true health of our spiritual lives is measured by how we feel"

If some of those statements trouble you, note that Elliott's writing reads like a modern day Religious Affections--Jonathan Edwards' 1746 classic which examines the centrality of emotions in Scripture and in the Christian life. Elliott is careful to ground his ideas, proposals, and conclusions in Scripture.

I really like this book. It affected me. It convicted me. It helped me. I'm celebrating God's providence, how he led me to peek into the "Christian" isle at Borders and spot Feel. Reading Feel has come with perfect timing. The thesis and thrust of the book hit a sanctification bullseye in me. I've already begun recommending this book to many of my friends.

Like with any book I deeply enjoy, I have a few quibbles with Feel. Chiefly, I wish Elliott had included a brief section near the beginning of the book that clearly articulates and unpacks the gospel message, serving those who will read this book and get excited about its content, but fail to digest it in a well formed gospel context. But, to be fair, the heart of the gospel is sprinkled and assumed throughout the book.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from Feel:

Jesus Christ brings to each of us a new set of information about the world around us. Without him, we have reason to fear and worry. With him, our emotions have a whole new context.

What we feel--our loves--reveals what we really believe and becomes the motivation for how we live.

...emotion does what a friend does--it counsels and advises...As we are conformed to Christ, we can learn to rely on emotions as we might rely on a friend.

Our emotional response to anything is a collage of our personality, upbringing, self-image, worldview, experiences, and beliefs. What we concentrate on, what we dwell on, what we run over and over again n our heads is what we get emotional about. So we need to stop and think about what we are always telling ourselves. If it does not line up with what is true, we must cancel the download. Then we need to reboot our thought patterns with godly values and beliefs. Only then can our emotions reflect a godly perspective.

Whatever podcast you play in your head is what you will eventually believe about God, others, and yourself. It will determine your emotional starting point and the place out of which you will respond. You can spend most of your life at a single spot emotionally because you pitched your tent on one thing that you relive and rehash every day. Sometimes, you have to make yourself pack it up and move on to something new.

Yup, that last quote is especially convicting, helpful, and freeing.

Here are a few of the endorsements for Feel:

Feel is an engaging book that's potentially liberating. God made emotions and Jesus expressed them; they need to be reclaimed and redeemed, not ignored or abandoned. Matthew Elliott does a service to the church through this thoughtful work.
-Randy Alcorn, author of Heaven and Deception

Many books today on the Christian life are baloney. Others just repackage what is widely known, or dress up tired platitudes with a new set of stories. This book is different. Based on solid research, it has truly fresh insights into our feelings and how God views them. I have been greatly helped personally by reading it, and I can't wait to pass it on to a bunch of other people who will eagerly receive its wisdom too. Best of all, in chapter after chapter, this book calls forth the godly feelings that, the author argues, God wants us to nurture and enjoy. Readers will discover here a path to enjoy God that they may never have glimpsed before.
-Robert Yarbrough, Ph.D., New Testament department chairman, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

As Christians it is easy for us to elevate reason at the expense of authentic emotion -- and in the process lose our passion for the God who created both. Matthew Elliott helps us recapture what we've lost and discover what it truly means to feel. A timely message for our generation.
-Alex and Brett Harris, authors of Do Hard Things

I have always felt that as Christians we do not have enough balanced teaching about the subject of Emotion. I was so happy to see that my close friend and former traveling assistant Dr. Matthew Elliot has written a book on this subject. I want to urge you to read and think though what he has written. I pray that all of us will have a greater walk in truth and reality as result of reading this very very unique book.
-George Verwer, Founder Operation Mobilization



Three weeks ago I walked into Borders, eager to spend my $50 gift card. First, I picked up a book on Switzerland (I recently discovered that I'm Swiss). Next, I grabbed a biography of Genghis Kahn (for some reason I find Genghis fascinating). By my calculations I had about 10 bucks left to spend, so I sauntered into the "Christian" isle to see if anything caught my eye and, something did, a book called Feel.

This book surprised me.

Not only did I think a lot, I also felt a lot while reading Matthew Elliott's Feel.

Apparently, several years ago this fella Matthew Elliott did doctoral research on the role of emotion in the New Testament (wish I had thought of that). That research turned into Elliott's book Faithful Feelings, a book that examines the felt experience of Christian living, how emotion was viewed by the New Testament writers in their cultural context. That book was published in 2006. I hope to read it. John Piper calls the book, "The most thorough study on emotions in the New Testament."

Published earlier this year, Feel seems to be a popularization/distillation/fleshing out of Elliott's earlier work. The book is aimed at two significant errors Elliott observes in American Christianity:

1. "we have made our relationship with God more about fulfilling our duty than expressing our passion. We make our spiritual lives into a list of dos and don'ts. We pursue this list more than we actually pursue Jesus. And this leads to a life that eventually becomes tired and numb, devoid of feeling, dead."

2. "we have become indoctrinated in the belief that emotions are unreliable, dangerous, and bad."

From his study of Scripture, Elliott's book builds upon several key ideas:

* "our emotions were given to us by God to drive us to our best"
* "emotions are among the most logical and dependable things in our lives"
* "emotions give us a window to see truth like nothing else"
* "the true health of our spiritual lives is measured by how we feel"

If some of those statements trouble you, note that Elliott's writing reads like a modern day Religious Affections--Jonathan Edwards' 1746 classic which examines the centrality of emotions in Scripture and in the Christian life. Elliott is careful to ground his ideas, proposals, and conclusions in Scripture.

I really like this book. It affected me. It convicted me. It helped me. I'm celebrating God's providence, how he led me to peek into the "Christian" isle at Borders and spot Feel. Reading Feel has come with perfect timing. The thesis and thrust of the book hit a sanctification bullseye in me. I've already begun recommending this book to many of my friends.

Like with any book I deeply enjoy, I have a few quibbles with Feel. Chiefly, I wish Elliott had included a brief section near the beginning of the book that clearly articulates and unpacks the gospel message, serving those who will read this book and get excited about its content, but fail to digest it in a well formed gospel context. But, to be fair, the heart of the gospel is sprinkled and assumed throughout the book.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from Feel:

Jesus Christ brings to each of us a new set of information about the world around us. Without him, we have reason to fear and worry. With him, our emotions have a whole new context.

What we feel--our loves--reveals what we really believe and becomes the motivation for how we live.

...emotion does what a friend does--it counsels and advises...As we are conformed to Christ, we can learn to rely on emotions as we might rely on a friend.

Our emotional response to anything is a collage of our personality, upbringing, self-image, worldview, experiences, and beliefs. What we concentrate on, what we dwell on, what we run over and over again n our heads is what we get emotional about. So we need to stop and think about what we are always telling ourselves. If it does not line up with what is true, we must cancel the download. Then we need to reboot our thought patterns with godly values and beliefs. Only then can our emotions reflect a godly perspective.

Whatever podcast you play in your head is what you will eventually believe about God, others, and yourself. It will determine your emotional starting point and the place out of which you will respond. You can spend most of your life at a single spot emotionally because you pitched your tent on one thing that you relive and rehash every day. Sometimes, you have to make yourself pack it up and move on to something new.

Yup, that last quote is especially convicting, helpful, and freeing.

Here are a few of the endorsements for Feel:

Feel is an engaging book that's potentially liberating. God made emotions and Jesus expressed them; they need to be reclaimed and redeemed, not ignored or abandoned. Matthew Elliott does a service to the church through this thoughtful work.
-Randy Alcorn, author of Heaven and Deception

Many books today on the Christian life are baloney. Others just repackage what is widely known, or dress up tired platitudes with a new set of stories. This book is different. Based on solid research, it has truly fresh insights into our feelings and how God views them. I have been greatly helped personally by reading it, and I can't wait to pass it on to a bunch of other people who will eagerly receive its wisdom too. Best of all, in chapter after chapter, this book calls forth the godly feelings that, the author argues, God wants us to nurture and enjoy. Readers will discover here a path to enjoy God that they may never have glimpsed before.
-Robert Yarbrough, Ph.D., New Testament department chairman, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

As Christians it is easy for us to elevate reason at the expense of authentic emotion -- and in the process lose our passion for the God who created both. Matthew Elliott helps us recapture what we've lost and discover what it truly means to feel. A timely message for our generation.
-Alex and Brett Harris, authors of Do Hard Things

I have always felt that as Christians we do not have enough balanced teaching about the subject of Emotion. I was so happy to see that my close friend and former traveling assistant Dr. Matthew Elliot has written a book on this subject. I want to urge you to read and think though what he has written. I pray that all of us will have a greater walk in truth and reality as result of reading this very very unique book.
-George Verwer, Founder Operation Mobilization



http://www.buzzardblog.com/buzzard_blog/2008/11/matthew-elliott.html

 
Balancing logic and emotions  Sep 12, 2008
From consumingworship.org

This was a bright spot in the latest round of review material. Honestly, this is one that I'm going to go back through with a fine-toothed comb for my own reading and learning pleasure because I felt I really just skimmed the surface for review purposes. As someone who grew up in a church tradition that downplayed the emotional side of faith, Feel was a very affirming read. I grew up in a culture that seemed scared of emotional displays in the context of faith, and I love Elliot's thesis (my own words here) that we are denying ourselves from a full life in Christ when we make our faith an intellectual/logical one and suppress our feelings.

The book is not a call to become hyper-sensitive and throw all critical thinking and logic out the window. There is a balance between reason and emotion that a healthy Christ-follower attains. The key is discernment as to whether or not a felt emotion is the correct emotion. Rather than use logic and reason as an instrument to squash emotions, use them to judge whether an emotional response is a godly one, and if it is don't impede it.

The author, Matthew Elliot, has a running blog here on the this site site and there is a special website set up for the book with extras here. Overall, I thought the book was a great read, thoughtfully put together. I would recommend it to anyone with questions regarding the relationship between faith and emotions.
 

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