by Pastor Tim Burt
Do you ever get discouraged? Who doesn’t? Does discouragement ever result in anything good? Does it ever please God?
Discouragement is the beginning symptom of hopelessness—a place you don’t want to come to. Discouragement is a warning sign. It’s like the symptoms you feel before sickness hits. They warn you that your body is under attack and that you need to resist it. When discouragement comes, it’s time to encourage your heart in the Lord. If not it could grow to hopelessness—Satan’s greatest tool designed to get you to give up your faith and hope in God’s love and involvement in your life. That’s displeasing to God and a wrecking ball slamming your life. Hebrews 10:38 (NIV) says, “But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him.”
In Jeremiah 18:12, we see that the Lord is not pleased with His people. He’s not pleased because they have quit trusting Him. That doesn’t happen quickly. It comes from experiencing disappointments—an unmet expectation here and another there. Those disappointments over time resulted in His people drifting away from Him. Some stopped paying attention to His ways and drifted over to other gods because He was not moving fast enough or answering prayers in the way they wanted. Others stopped thinking about any god whatsoever. They ended up leaning on themselves for their own wisdom in everything. Leaning on yourself alone for the answers and solutions to your life is a wrecking ball that will cause your life to crumble and fall!
In Jeremiah 18:12 (TLB) we can listen in on what the Lord says to them. He is repeating their own words—echoing what is coming from their hearts and mouths. “Don’t waste your breath. This is hopeless. We have no intention whatever of doing what God says. We will continue to live as we want to, free from any restraint, full of stubbornness and wickedness!”
All of us come up against tough situations at some time or another. Many of us have been in tough situations for a long time. It’s easy to get discouraged at times like that. But hopelessness has to be resisted. We have to have faith that God loves us deeply. That He desires to and will show us and make a way. No one that has faith in God’s Word and truly seeks Him becomes hopeless. He reveals Himself to the one who lives by faith and who is a seeker of God. When you have faith, the eyes of your heart see God in ways that those who do not live by faith, can see. God does not live in the shadows. He is not hidden. He is not far away. God reveals Himself to a seeker. He reveals Himself through His Word, through a Pastor, through prayer, through answers to prayer, and through other seekers of God.
Draw near to God today. Cry to Him from your heart, but not out of hopelessness or desperation. Cry to God from a spirit of faith knowing He loves you, cares for you, and desires to help and lead you! Ask Him to lead you through His Word and speak to your heart. James 4:8 (NKJV) says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you…” He is our blessed hope in all things! As Psalms 9:10 (NKJV) says, “Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.”
Discouragement leads to hopelessness which is a wrecking ball in your life. Instead of letting it wreck you, why don’t you wreck the devil by having great faith in God. Faith pleases God! Faith helps you see God moving in your life and keeps your heart encouraged in the darkest times! Seek Him through His Word and prayer and have expectation—not that He’ll resolve every issue in one swooping miracle. But that He will lead and guide you into better place of answers and miracles helping you know and experience the depth of His love toward you!
Psalm 46:1 (NIV) “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.”
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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