What To do When You Are Discouraged

What To do When You Are Discouraged

Yesterday, we established that discouragement is unavoidable and inevitable, but we must also realize that it is not invincible. There are weapons we can employ to deal with our discouragement. Here are a few.

  1. Go to the Lord immediately and quickly. (Proverbs 18:10) The more you walk with God, the more likely, you will run to Him when you are discouraged. The more real He is, the more you will believe, He is the One to turn to when courage is weak. (II Samuel 22:2-3; Psalm 18:2; Psalm 61:1-4) The first reaction that a Christian ought to have when he comes to a time of discouragement is to go to the Lord. Discouragement cannot go away unless we go to the source of real strength and courage.

  2. Pour out your heart to God. In I Samuel 1, Hannah was discouraged because she could not have a boy. She wanted so badly to have a child, and in her time of discouragement, she simply came to the Lord, and poured out her heart to Him, and told Him how she felt. The Lord gave her Samuel. (Psalm 18:6, 34:4, 40:1, 62:8) It is when we come to Him, and pour out our soul, to Him, and tell Him how we feel, that He can reach down, and wrap His arms around us, and give us the courage we need, in our time, of depression.

  3. Wait upon the Lord. Sometimes, we need to spend some time, at the feet, of the Lord. Martha was cumbered about serving and got frustrated. Jesus said to her, "One thing is needful, and Mary has chosen, that good part." Martha needed to just come and wait on the Lord that He might give her strength. The disciples seemed calm when they sat and listened as Jesus spoke. Why? They were waiting upon the Lord and allowing Him to strengthen them. (Isaiah 40:31)

  4. Think about the Lord. (Isaiah 26:3; Habakkuk 3:17-19) When our minds are turned upon the Lord, there is a peace that can overcome us even as the storm is raging about us. When our minds are upon the Prince of Peace, they cannot be filled with turmoil.

  5. Keep your faith in God's deliverance. If God is great enough to deliver us for eternity, surely, He can deliver us from all else. (Psalm 56:3-4, 11)

  6. Remember that God is in control. How difficult it is to suddenly try to believe in a God that is working and in control! We must walk with Him to know that He is in control when those times come. (II Samuel 16:11) David had that kind of belief when Shimei cursed him. He did not fight. He did not let him destroy him, but rather, he said, "Let God do his work, for God is in control." You see, we must have faith enough to believe that God knows what is happening.

  7. Do not try too hard to run from it. (Psalm 4:1) A beautiful line in the Bible is the little phrase; "Thou hast enlarged me, when I was in distress." Too often, we run, resist, resent, or rebel, rather than being patient, prayerful, wise, trusting, understanding, true, happy, and enduring. For any Christian, the best reaction to depression is to let Him have His work in our life. Noah built an ark with great persecution and harassment, but God was working and enlarging him. It was a difficult time for Abraham, waiting for the promise of a son, but God was enlarging him. Joseph was sold into slavery and persecuted greatly, as God was enlarging him. David ran from Saul for his life, but God was enlarging him. We must be careful not to run from God's will, but rather, in the times of discouragement, let God's work be done.

  8. Be reminded that God is always with us. Perhaps, Joshua was discouraged, over the death, of Moses, but the Lord said to him, in Joshua 1:9, "Be not dismayed, for the Lord thy God, is with thee, whithersoever thou goest." Joshua had never gone anywhere, without Moses, before. God is always with us. If someone else is gone, He is still there. If someone else fails us, God is still there. We must realize that God's presence is our courage.

  9. Keep looking for the coming of our Lord. (I Thessalonians 4:16-18) The greatest encourager for the child of God is the realization that one of these days, we are going to spend eternity with our Saviour and our heavenly Father.

We can be encouraged today, not because there are no discouragements. They are there; they will come. Discouragement is a part of life. However, we can be encouraged, because of the goodness of our Lord, and finding our courage within our relationship with Him. May we learn that walking with God is the key to being encouraged in the times of discouragement.