As a human being, you will deal with times of discouragement. As a Christian, you will still deal with discouragement. The only difference is that God can help you overcome this feeling, if you allow Him. I’ve been struggling myself the past few days, and I just can’t seem to shake these negative feelings. I’ve found myself asking if I’m doing enough, wondering if I am where I should be in life, wondering if I’m really making a difference. When we begin to doubt and ask ourselves these questions, that’s just enough of a little crack for the Devil to slip in.
Your mind is a powerful thing. He’s going to attack it. As I’ve mentioned in a previous blog, if you’re strong in your faith, that’s what he’s going to go after. I’m not going to lie, sometimes being a Christian can be tough. When we allow ourselves to slip away, even the slightest bit from God, we move closer to the Devil’s playground. What is his playground? This entire world.
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” – 1 Peter 5:8-10
We must STAY COVERED! There’s nothing the Devil loves more than a lukewarm Christian. Someone who is on the fence with their faith is an easy target. Most times, all it takes is one little slip up, one little inconvenience, from him to make us lose our faith. So, what does that say about us? That we are not standing firm in our faith like we should be.
…”If you do not stand firm in your faith,
you will not stand at all.” – Isaiah 7:9
The enemy knows who’s strong in their faith and who is relying on God, just like he knows who isn’t. Are we praying like we should be? Are we reading The Word every day? Are we armed and ready for spiritual warfare? Are we allowing inconveniences to control us?
I find myself asking these same questions. Am I really being faithful and relying on God? It’s easy when life seems to be “falling apart,” so-to-speak, to blame others, even God, and question where He is in these times. God, if you really cared about me, my family, you wouldn’t allow this to happen. Why are You allowing these negative feelings and emotions to control me?
But we MUST realize this- He IS here. He IS with us. He’s NEVER left us. But do we take even a split second to recognize that, or do we go straight into blaming Him? Life is full of inconveniences, bad people, bad situations, down and discouraging days. This is inevitable in our Christian walk. Why? Because this isn’t Heaven.
We must understand that problems are still going to arise, bad days are going to happen. If we don’t accept this and prepare ourselves, then we will be back at Square One all over again in just a few days. Stay in His Word, keep seeking Him and praying, stay armored up and ready for the enemy’s attacks. Recognize the areas in your life where you are most vulnerable, and stay away! Don’t allow yourself to give into temptation, no matter how hard it gets. Remember 1 Corinthians 10:13:
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”
This isn’t just a “feel good” verse- this is truth! This is why it’s so important to know the Bible and what it is telling us. God is literally right with us, telling us exactly how to deal with this stuff. We have this Book full of answers that we just push aside most days, especially when we are discouraged and hurting. How do we expect God to help us and answer prayers when we aren’t even praying or attempting to reach out to Him? Just imagine how HE feels.
To me, it’s like picturing someone drowning and throwing out a life float to save them. All they have to do is grab it and hang on while I reel them in. But instead of grabbing onto it, they just push it away and refuse the help. Now imagine that’s someone you love with all your heart. You want to save them and you’re doing all you can to show this person that help is here, but they refuse to accept it. That’s going to confuse and hurt you. You’re watching your loved one drown in all this water (all our problems) but they don’t want the help you are giving by offering the life float (the Bible). But if they’re not even trying to make an effort to get rescued (reading The Word, praying, avoiding weak and vulnerable areas of our lives), you just stand there and watch them sink lower and lower.
We have to learn to say, enough is enough! We have to find that inner strength to just let it all go and surrender every problem, every hurt, every inconvenience, every negative feeling and emotion to God. Let Him rescue you. Let Him save you, and pull you out of the water so you can breathe again. Don’t choose to stay there and drown.