Thursday, January 31, 2019

Overcoming Discouragement

Joshua 1:9 “This is my command- be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Hi friends, it’s been a while since I’ve posted. The truth is that for some time unknown to myself I was battling discouragement. Discouragement by definition is loss of confidence or enthusiasm ; (without which it is impossible to produce anything creative.) The last week I had some friends come over for some time of prayer and that was what helped me realize that it was discouragement that was holding me back from being all that I am and from becoming all that God wants me to become.

Why Discouragement ?

1)  Lack of purpose - Often, long times of waiting to see a dream fulfilled can cause us to doubt our purpose. The Bible reminds us in Gal 6:9 “Let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”  I recently read of a story of a band of minstrels performing many years ago in Europe. It was winter time and the snow was falling. Fewer and fewer people came to watch their performances. One day, one of the troupe members got discouraged and said to the others, “Why bother performing? No one comes to watch us …let’s pack up and go home.” But an older member stood up and said “No, we must keep to our purpose. It doesn’t matter if only one or two come. Let’s perform better than ever before.” That night, they gathered their courage and performed better than ever before. Very few people showed up to watch. However after the show, one of the troupe members was handed a note …”I thoroughly enjoyed your performance. Excellent job. I loved it!” …The note was signed “Your king”. None of them knew that their King had been watching them all that time unknown to anyone else. Let us be encouraged by this story and remember to do everything we do to the best of our ability and for our King, the KING of KINGS.

      2) Lack of positive reinforcements- All of us find ourselves in situations marked by shortage of encouragement. At such times we must learn to encourage ourselves just like David, a man after God’s own heart did in the Bible 1 Sam 30:1-6 . I have read of this account in David’s life called The Worst Day in His life. He lost everything including his wives and his men also turned against him fearing the lives of their sons and daughters and so began to think of stoning him. But David encouraged himself in the Lord and asks the priest to bring the ephod and then he asks the Lord what to do and the Lord tells him to go after the enemy army and promises him that they would recover everything that was taken from him. Sometimes the person we most expect to understand may not be available or sometimes even able to understand us at such times we can remember Jesus the perfect Lamb of God is always interceding for us at the Father’s right hand for us. That will give us the courage to stand alone and encourage ourselves in the Lord.

3) Lack of guidance- We may not feel like associating with people when we are facing some kind of difficulty but the truth is that we need to first of all ask God what needs to be done. He may direct us to a particular person /an author /speaker to learn from. We read in 1 Cor 10:13 “No trial has overtaken you that is not faced by others. And God is faithful: He will not let you be tried beyond what you are able to bear, but with the trial will also provide a way out so that you may be able to endure it.” This means that we can learn from the right people.  

HOW to Overcome Discouragement :

1)PRAYER- We should spend more time talking to God, whether or not we feel like. We could discuss our fears, doubts and struggles with Him. We must ask Him for forgiveness and guidance for the right steps to take. Psalms 37:23 “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord.” Psalms 18:33 “He makes my feet like the feet of a deer and stations me upon heights.”

 2) WORD OF GOD – This is the best time to dig deep into the Scriptures especially go back to those portions in your Bible which God has spoken to you in the past. My favorite verses are Jer 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. Plans to give you a hope and a future.”, Haggai 2:23 “… I will make you like a signet ring on my finger, says the Lord for I have chosen you.I , the Lord of Heaven’s Armies have spoken.”

         3)PRAISE & WORSHIP -  Sing and Play Praise and Worship Music in the house/Car. Praise God for what He has done for us .Give thanks with a grateful Heart. And   Worship the Lord for who HE is to us.  “He alone is your God, the only one who is worthy of your praise, the one who has done    these mighty miracles that you have seen with your own eyes.”- Deu 10:21 , “ Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.”-1 Chron 16:29
  4)JOURNALING – We can start to write out our thoughts and ideas that we get during Prayer times. We may also record any dreams or visions or pictures the Lord may download to us. Answered prayers can be recorded and this will give us hope for new prayer requests.
 5) SHARE & CARE- “Freely you have received and so freely give.”-Mathew     10:8 Whatever we have received from the Lord, we can share with others …be it our testimony, intercession, volunteering, or financial aid , maybe even cooking a meal, visiting someone in hospital, etc Use wisdom and prayer before setting out , seek God about what can be done  to go out and be a blessing to someone else. When we focus on what God wants us to do for someone else, we will feel fulfilled and happy to be used by Him and that would be therapy for our discouraged soul. There is no greater joy than to be used of by GOD to wipe another's tears or to bring a smile to another’s face.
Click to enjoy this encouraging song:        

Hope you enjoyed this post. Consider it my way of Caring and sharing what the Lord has given me. Praying that it blesses you to bless another!
Luv n prayers,
Sparky laurie