5 Steps for When You See the World and Get Discouraged

 

Disasters.

Defiance.

Temptations.

Trials.


When I look at our world today, it’s easy to get a bad case of discouragement. Seeing a news story that makes my heart sink. Watching relationships damaged and broken. Hearing the faithless with shattered spirits utter the word no each time God knocks on their heart’s door.


It’s enough to dump a heaping load of darkness in even the most joyful day.



Yet in the midst of the misery, God's Word remains true.



Even before we knew what we would see happening in our world, God knew. He gave us direction through Scripture that would teach us what to do in the most treacherous times.



I have a confession though, and I’m a little embarrassed to share it.



There are some books of the Bible I tend to skip over. It’s true. But I’m trying to do better. I’m praying and asking God to help me see God’s correction with new vision. In His grace and loving-kindness, He is answering that prayer.



The book of Jude is a perfect example.



Jude begins with a harsh reminder about what happened in the past to those who rejected God. He also tackles this reality - there are still people today who will face the same fate as those in the past.



Truth like that can sure make the future seem bleak, can’t it? But just as we think things are looking discouraging, Jude ends with a clear description of how we persevere through it all.



And the truth is, it’s pretty simple.



Let’s take a look at these 5 things we can do when we see the world and get discouraged. I found hope here, and I pray you will too.

 

1. Build ourselves up in the faith.

 

“But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith…” (v. 20 NLT).



God gave us a great gift when He taught us to encourage ourselves, and one another.



Reminding ourselves of God's goodness helps even the deepest hurt. (Tweet this.)

 

2. Pray in the Spirit.

 

“...pray in the power of the Holy Spirit,” (v. 20 NLT).



We can feel the comfort of our Holy Spirit as we take every care to our Heavenly Father in prayer. He generously offers peace and hope when we feel down.

 

3. Keep ourselves in God's love.

 

“Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life,” (v. 21 NKJV).

We can have a hope and expectancy for what will come, and today we have God's love to keep us in perfect peace.

 

4. Have mercy on those who doubt.

 

“And have mercy on those who doubt;” (v. 22 ESV).



In the previous verse, Jude mentions the mercy of our Lord, and then follows that with a call for us to also have mercy to “those whose faith is wavering” (NLT). Lord, gives us the strength to show mercy as Jesus did.

 

5. To others show mercy mixed with fear.

 

As we share the love of our Savior, we are also called to walk in a reverent fear of the Lord. The NLT version puts it this way. “Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.”



As we respond with mercy, let’s ask for God’s wisdom to guide us with a healthy balance of grace and truth.



And let’s also hold onto this concluding promise, “Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault.” (v. 24)

Thank you, Lord, for the promise of your glorious presence.


For more help from God’s Word for discouragement, visit this post here.

Blessings,

Kristine

 

Do I Trust God to Take Care of My Kids?

My son texted us a few days ago, at 4 a.m.


He was sick with a severe sore throat. OK, I thought. We can handle this minor long-distance emergency. Find a doctor in the area, send him the insurance information, make sure he has plenty of ibuprofen and fluids on hand.


Check.


Except for one little problem. He and his ministry team would be leaving at 6 a.m. in a van to travel 600 miles for their next mission trip, to an unfamiliar city where we don’t know where anything is.


Should he go? Should he stay home? Is it just a sore throat? Or something worse? Questions and potential plans swirled through my mind, and honestly, I didn’t have a right answer. We had to take a deep breath, pray, and make the best decision we could.


More importantly, I had to decide to give the situation to God, and remind myself that He is indeed God.



“Understand, therefore, that the Lord your God is indeed God. He is the faithful God who keeps his covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes his unfailing love on those who love him and obey his commands.” Deuteronomy 7:9 NLT



I love the above verse from Deuteronomy when I struggle to trust God with my kids. It holds two powerful promises we need. The first tells us that God is who the Bible says He is.


The Lord your God is indeed God. (Tweet this.)


When we have a hard time giving Him control of our circumstances - especially where our kids are concerned - we need this firm reminder. I can (sometimes) get carried away in my own thoughts, worrying and wondering what to do. I love it when God steps in and simply says, “I’ve got this.”


God keeps His promises for a thousand generations.


The second promise reinforces how much God loves and cares for our children, grandchildren, and generations to come. It provides hope and encouragement when uncertainty about their futures turns to fear. Oh how God loves them! So much that he lavishes his love on us and assures us of His faithful care for our kids.



I needed this verse today. And if you did too, let’s stand together on the promises of Deuteronomy 7:9. Trusting God when it comes to my kids may be a daily renewal of my thought-patterns, but He is faithful and His Word is the same yesterday, today, and every day of our children’s futures.


Blessings,

Kristine