The Lord is With You!

Let Go of Discouragement


Over the last six months my family went through continuous trials, tribulations, and stress. We lost family members and friends. Simultaneously my position at work was threatened to be terminated.

I felt defeated. I lost my confidence and enthusiasm for work and life. My spirit felt broken and my soul weary and worn out. My shoulders slouched and my energy waned. My warm, encouraging, sunshine smiles morphed into frowned eyebrows and “barking” at co-workers. I felt like I couldn’t do anything right. My presence leaked unpleasantness. The worry, the fears and the anxiety resulted in sleep deprivation and exhaustion as the situation at work dragged over several months with no solution in sight.

In the past, I would suppress and repress my emotions. Life did not touch me. Or so I thought. I buried my emotions deep, never to be looked at again. But my body kept score. Feelings and emotions are an essential part of humans. Over the last six years I learned to recognize and acknowledge emotions. But it feels the pendulum has swung to the other end. I feel more vulnerable than ever and sometimes wish I was back in the past where I would bury the frustration and the sadness that overwhelms me.

Discouragement developed into a near insurmountable issue for me. None of us wake up with the intention to be discouraged today. It grabbed and sucked the life out of me! I wish I could say it was easy to let go.

Have you contemplated on what causes discouragement? It could be anything across the spectrum of the spiritual realm, our physical bodies, our minds, and the world around us.

  • Things don’t go as planned.
  • Failing in our own strength.
  • Tasks are too big and overwhelming.
  • Continuous stress/trials/battering.
  • Keep running into obstacles.
  • Unanswered prayers.
  • Unmet needs.
  • Lack of coping skills.
  • Repeated failures.
  • Being reminded of our past sins.
  • Getting distracted.

Discouragement is one of the devil’s main weapons against Christians. The enemy tries to destroy and distract us. And if all else fail, he launches discouragement. Because discouragement wears us out and doubt creeps in. We wonder if we are doing the right thing. We hear the same taunting voice from the Garden of Eden, “Did God really say…”. That leaves us naked and afraid with unsure footing.

How do we cope with discouragement?

King Jehoshaphat’s story in 2 Chronicles 20 is a good example of what to do when we are overwhelmed and discouraged. A vast army approached the Israelites. Jehoshaphat was terrified and called for public fasting and prayer. He offered a powerful prayer (verse 6 – 12) finishing with “We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.”The Lord responded, “Do not be afraid. Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s” (verse 15). And continued in verse 17, “But you will not even need to fight. Take your positions; then stand still and watch the LORD’s victory. He is with you. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Go out against them tomorrow, for the LORD is with you.”

The above story proves that we have a choice. We can choose against discouragement. Because our God fight for us. He is for us. He goes with us through the deep rivers of trials and tribulations. All we need to do is trusting Him to fight the battle for us and take in our position:

   • Recognize and acknowledge your discouragement. It is a common human feeling. Forgive yourself.
   • Exercise your choice to change your emotional state: First, stop grumbling about your circumstances. Second, replace your negative self-talk with positive affirmation of God’s promises. Here are a few Scriptural promises of God’s presence (Joshua 1:9), God’s help in strengthening us and holding us up (Isaiah 41:10). Remember that God’s army on your side is greater than the enemy’s. (2 Chronicles 32:7).
   • Express your emotions to others and/or to God. Read Psalms 42 where the author pours out his heart to God, praise God, put his hope in God and acknowledge God as his Savior and Manager of his life.

Finally, let go of discouragement! God is fighting for you. He is working for your good what the enemy meant for evil. And he continues to refine you, sometimes through fire, to become His masterpiece. This is all part of our life lessons this side of eternity.

Father, we fight a hard battle against discouragement. I bring my reader to you. You know her/his name. You have given your life for each one of them. You know their personal struggles. You have been there in the past for them. And we trust that you are with them on this very moment. Like the author of Psalms 42 we call out to you, “Why am I so discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again−my Savior and my God! … But each day the LORD pours his unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing his songs, praying to God who give me life.” We lean into you for strength through these trials, and tribulations; strength to take up our positions and strength to stay in the moment and faith to trust you. We thank you for your presence, your wisdom, insight, and guidance during this time. You are still our God, no matter our circumstances. We love you Lord. Amen.

Let me know how I can help you or leave a comment.

Until Next Time

Anita Beukman

Your Hope Coach

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