How to Overcome Discouragement 

I had fainted, Unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living (Psalm 27:13 KJV)

What do you do when you feel discouraged? This devotional unearths God’s weapon buried in the Bible to overcome discouragement. But first, let us review the subtle manifestations of a discouraged heart.

We are discouraged when we lose the strength of heart, courage, or willpower to accomplish a task. In most cases, we often start a task with vigor and enthusiasm, such as the Christian life or ministry. However, as we face more challenges—and Satan will ensure we do—our hearts slowly lose their initial momentum. The various synonyms for discouragement help us grasp this important heart posture: demoralize, dishearten, dispirit, frustrate, unman, and unnerve.

We begin making subtle changes to our Christian lives or activity when our hearts are dispirited. And the ultimate trophy of discouragement, what Satan is after, is quitting—we stop doing what we were doing, what  God wants us to do. Some might quit attending Church; others will stop seeking God in prayer or living a righteous life. Still, some ministers might just leave the ministry. Those who do not quit might simply become spiritually cold or lukewarm. 

But God has different ways for us to combat discouragement: spiritual warfare! David vividly describes one of these powerful weapons in Ps. 27:13:

“I had fainted, Unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living” (Psalm 27:13 KJV)

David would have quit or given up if he had not believed or firmly accepted the truth that he would eventually see God’s goodness. He was convinced that although weeping might endure for the night, joy was indeed coming in the morning. Since discouragement is an attitude of the heart rooted in what we have believed in a difficult time, we will overcome it by adopting a different position of our hearts in believing the Word of God. 

Believing in God’s goodness might appear as mere “Christian rhetoric.” In fact, it is easy for us to say when we are discouraged, “you just do not understand.” Although it might sound insensitive, we must be careful not to entangle God’s truth in the mesh of our emotions in difficult times. If we get jumbled in our problems, we make ourselves helpless and become blinded to God’s ways. Even God cannot help those who will not trust or believe Him. 

Can you believe you will see God’s goodness in that struggle in your family, Christian life, ministry, marriage, etc.? If you do, the Spirit will recharge your heart with courage and momentum to continue pressing forward, subduing discouragement, and eventually seeing the good you believed you would see. 

Meditate

What aspect of your life brings discouragement to you right now?

Apply the Word

Can we believe or trust God? He is waiting for us to do so. Satan wants us to quit or tone down “a little”—that is why he sends waves of discouragement against Christians. Instead, God wants us to believe we will see His goodness and that our heart’s posture will determine the course of our lives.

Pray

Ask the Lord to help us overcome discouragement. 

Read & Watch

Christ Our Strength 
How David Encouraged Himself
The ministry of encouragement
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