One of the most difficult emotions is discouragement. I don't like feeling discouraged and I hate to see that look of exhausted frustration in my child's eyes. Even my husband comes home from work discouraged at times and it always changes my mood. Discouragement is one emotion that's very contagious.
Many people are feeling discouraged right now. They're losing jobs or struggling to learn new jobs. They're juggling the demands of work, home, and family. They're feeling pushed down by debt or bills they can't pay. America was once referred to as the richest country in the world. Yet some hard-working folks can barely afford to live here...even those that can are feeling the pinch.
This afternoon, I got online to search for answers about God and discouragement. Somehow I landed on Hal Lindsey's site and viewed his April 3rd report. That's where I got my answer and I realized the secret to living above discouragement. If you don't get Hal Lindsey on TV, you can view his report online each week. He calls himself "the watchman on the wall" and he is obviously a man blessed with godly wisdom.
His April 3rd report was different from any of his previous reports because it focused on faith not world events or bible prophecy. I felt like he was talking directly to me when he explained that we need to see the giants in our lives through God's eyes not through our own understanding or through the world's eyes. He referred to the biblical David and how he slayed Goliath by having faith in God's ability to help him. The world saw the size of the giant Goliath and didn't believe David had a chance. But David knew the power of his God and he boldly stepped forward and believed he would have victory.
This reinforces something I read recently about how women have three views of themselves--their own view, the opinions of others, and God's view. But the only valid opinion comes from God. Not only must we see ourselves through God's eyes, but we also need to see our problems through God's eyes. He created us and he certainly has the ability to care for us. Hal Lindsey called it "breaking the faith barrier" when we begin to see everything from a godly perspective.
Whenever we face a decision, we tend to look at the problem from a worldly perspective. We want to make the right choices but we wonder if those choices will bring unwelcome misery into our lives. We wonder how we will manage if we step out in faith and make that choice. We forget that God always blesses our right decisions and he will sustain us through every good decision we make, especially if that decision was made to help someone else.
The Bible promises that God will sustain us when we cast our burdens on Him. It also says that we shouldn't lean on our own understanding, but we should acknowledge God's power and He will make our paths straight. Most of our stress in life comes from not seeing our problems from a godly perspective. We forget that He has the power to sustain us through anything. He has resources at His disposal that he can pour out on us at any time.
I learned a lot about discouragement this week. I know it will continue to be a part of my life. But whether or not it crushes me depends on how I look at it. Will I invite fear and anxiety by seeing the problem with my own understanding and the limitations of this world? Will I value the opinions of others? Or will I set my sights higher and see the challenge through God's eyes, believing his promises to care for all my needs when I stay close to Him and walk in His will.