Exodus 6:9, “Moses reported this to the Israelites, but they did not listen to him because of their discouragement and harsh labor.”
Have you ever felt like giving up on God? Maybe you weren’t going to become an atheist but you were tempted to stop praying and having faith for things to change because of your disappointments in life. If we’re being honest, I believe all of us have felt discouraged at one time or another since becoming a Christian.
For some, discouragement can come after the loss of a loved one or when they receive bad news from the doctor. Others feel like giving up when they face financial troubles. Sometimes ministers even feel like giving up when the church hits hard times or they get burned out. Others can be discouraged because they find themselves on the “merry-go-round” of sin and no matter what they do they can’t control their inner desires.
It doesn’t matter what makes us discouraged because every discouragement has the same cure- Jesus!
Consider the following three things to do in order to overcome discouragement; first, recognize that having discouragement doesn’t mean you’re bad or abnormal. Discouragement can come to anyone at anytime. Even the great prophet Elijah felt like giving up despite having seen God’s miraculous delivering power on Mount Carmel (1 Kings 19:4). Discouragement is defined as, “the loss of hope and confidence.” Specifically, we as disciples can become discouraged when we don’t have hope in God’s promises like we used to.
Second, don’t let your “feelings” control your “faith.” You have to decide that regardless of how you feel- you are going to believe and confess God’s Word over your life. Many times people of faith have had to overcome their feelings of discouragement (ex., “King David, Paul, Moses, etc.”). Just because you feel discouraged doesn’t mean you have to live discouraged. If Daniel could overcome discouragement in the lion’s den- you can overcome whatever is discouraging you; just keep your faith (Philippians 4:13).
Third, don’t let your present circumstances dictate your God-given identity. Just because you might have lost a loved one doesn’t mean you’re alone- God is with you. You’re not a loser because you lost a job- you are a blessed and highly favored child of God waiting on the Lord to open a new door of employment. You’re not a sinner because you have sinned; you are a Holy Ghost sanctified saint of God learning to count your flesh as crucified with Christ (Galatians 5:24). Make a decision to believe you are who God said you are and that you can do all that He said you can do (Ephesians 4:22-24).
Do you struggle with discouragement? If so, pray this out loud, “Father, forgive me for losing my hope and confidence in you. Help me to believe I am who you said I am and that I can do what you said I can do. I choose to trust you over my feelings because I know you will never leave me nor forsake me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Are you discouraged?
- Repent if you have allowed discouragement to take away your trust in God’s plan for your life.
- When facing discouragement find verses in the Bible that give you faith and pray them over your life (Romans 10:17). A wise man once said, “When you’re discouraged don’t think to yourself, speak the Word to yourself!”
- Praise God for who He is, all that He has already done and has promised to do (Psalm 149)!
One Year Reading Plan
Jeremiah 51:54-52:34, Titus 3:1-15, Psalm 100:1-5, & Proverbs 26:18-19. Click here to read online.