Have you felt discouraged lately?
Hanging on like an Autumn leaf, fearing the slightest breeze could send you plummeting?
Guess what? You’re not alone.
This word discouraged. Seems it’s been a common thread running through conversations over the last several days. I’ve been there too.
We get tired; we grow weary; we have thoughts of giving up. We wonder where our passion has gone; why the fire feels as though extinguished.
The opposite of discourage is encourage; within both, courage can be found. In every discouraging circumstance in our lives, we must dig deep and find courage. Christ in us, the hope of glory. Christ. In. Us. What could make us braver than that? God knows we face discouragement; yes, Jesus endured so we would not grow weary. Then the flicker. It’s still there.
“For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.” Hebrews 12:3 (NKJV)
Feeling discouraged? I’ve been there too. Reach out to a friend. Reach out for prayer. Reach out; because when we reach out, we aren’t holding in.
Discouragement isn’t cause to give up; it’s cause to step up. Grab courage right out of the middle of discouragement. tweet it
God has given us gifts to use; He has positioned us where we stand at this very moment in time. What could be more discouraging than not using our gifts? God chooses the weak to shame the strong. It may be a harder road than we would choose, but I’d rather be chosen than choose easy. How about you?
“Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:10 (NASB)
Here are 4 ways to fight discouragement:
1. Pray. It may seem obvious, but we’ve been known to forget. It’s okay to talk with God about our discouragement. It’s His joy to refresh our souls.
2. Redirect our focus by boasting in the Lord, instead of thinking more of ourselves than we ought. Discouragement can be a form of pride. We feel sorry for ourselves for what we haven’t achieved; for what we haven’t accomplished; for where we’d hoped to be by now; for not being more appreciated; for feeling we don’t have a voice. Let’s redirect our focus off of ourselves and onto God. Let’s release the burden of self. God inhabits the praises of His people. Praise changes things. Praising through difficult circumstances takes our eyes off the difficult circumstances. Supernatural changes happen when we praise Him.
3. Believe the Word, really believe it. If I asked you if you believe what the Bible says is true, most of you would say of course I do. Do you believe it’s true for you? I’ve said this before, it’s easier to encourage others than it is to grab hold of it for ourselves. Believe the promises are personal. Wait on the Lord. “He who began a good work in you is faithful to complete it” Philippians 1:6. I’m thinking you’ve encouraged someone with that truth. Be encouraged, the you in that scripture means you.
4. Take time to rest. Discouragement and exhaustion go hand-in-hand. In music, a rest means you don’t play a note. Maybe we’re playing too many notes and ignoring all the rests. When we do, we aren’t playing the music as it was meant to be played. Rest in Him. Speaking of music, pop in your favorite worship music. Uplifting and encouraging lyrics is food for the soul. Maybe it’s as simple as knowing we’re not alone. Not the way the world says misery loves company, but the way the Word says unity through humility.
Remember friends, feeling discouraged doesn’t mean we’ve been defeated; it probably means we’re doing something right. Press on. His mercies are new every morning.
Blessings and Peace to you,