Strike 3. You’re out.

“Hello. My name is – , and I am a discouraged Christian. Yes, I go to church. Yes, I read the bible too. But I am struggling. I don’t need your platitudes or your ‘Holy’ advice. I need you to be real with me. Tell me that you have struggled too. Tell me you know how it feels to be discouraged. Tell me that it’s not only me. When will I stop feeling so lost? I keep questioning my beliefs. Is God indeed good? Is He really with me? Does He actually hear my prayers? Don’t just tell me He does, show me. Help me understand why God can be so silent for so long. Tell me how He puts up with the pain that so many ‘good’ people feel and can seemingly allow bad people to prosper? Please, Encourage me. I need it. Give me hope that God is there and that though He is silent, He is never still.”

Marvin-the-Paranoid-Android

We all know how to praise and testify when God provides for us just in the nick of time. When we fasted and prayed and God provided. He came in at the last-minute and He saved us. But how do we testify when God didn’t come through for us the way we asked him to? How do we praise Him when our prayer request went seemingly unanswered? The old ladies can stand up in church and praise God when “the miraculous check came two days before the water and electricity was supposed to be shut off,” but tell me how to Praise God when the check didn’t come and the whole family had to go by without water and electricity. How should she praise God then?

What do you do when you get down on your knees and pray for someone to come and alleviate your pain, and yet the suffering continues? No one needs to tell you how to thank God when He provides you with the job you’ve been praying and fasting for, but what about when you are jobless for almost a year? What about when you can no longer provide for your family, and the eviction notice is lying on the kitchen counter? You don’t need someone to tell you how to survive when everything in your life is going well and you have someone who loves you, but what about when your biological clock has ‘tocked’ and you are still alone?

biological_clock243-940x626

There are some things we are dealing with in our lives that no one else knows about. There are some burdens we carry that we feel are ours alone. There are some struggles that can bring even a ‘strong’ man to his knees. Have you ever felt weary? Have you ever felt like giving up? Have you ever felt like throwing in the towel?

You are not alone.

There is only one solace for the discouraged Christian. And it’s found in God’s word. In Hebrews 11 we see the many things people suffered for their God. They persevered through mocking, scourging, chains, imprisonments, stoning, being sawn in two, temptations, death by the sword, and homelessness. The writer tells us in Hebrews 12 that because of their perseverance and their testimony—we can be encouraged amidst our discouragement. We can see the things that those who came before us endured, and we can know that we too can endure.

man in chain

When we are discouraged, we can look at Christ who passed this way before us. He has tasted and seen our struggle, our pain, and He encourages us to press on. You might think God doesn’t see your pain. That God is indifferent to your cries. But you are not alone. Jesus himself felt forsaken by God when He was on the cross, but God never let His son carry a burden that was greater that He could bear.

When Christ carried up His cross to be crucified it soon became too much for him. Blood, tears and sweat stung his eyes. His body cried out in pain. He could not go on. He fell under the weight of this world. But then God sent Simon to help Jesus carry the cross. God did not take the cross away–but He sent His servant Simon to help lift Christ’s burden. God never left Jesus. God may have seemed silent, but He was always present. He was careful lest His child became too weary of His burden. When every thing spelled doom. God said, don’t give up! I am with you.


Simon Carrying The Cross from Passion of Christ

Discouragement can come to us when we are going the way God wants us to and satan in anger tries to pull us down and out of the game. But the God who hears your prayers, the God who sees your tears, and the God who loves you,  He rebukes the devil and He encourages us once more. Christ sympathizes with our every weaknesses, and He was tempted in every way we are–yet without sin. So do not despair. Christ is with you. He is cheering you on!

“The greatest act of faith some days is to simply get up and face another day.” Because “you can get a thousand no’s from man, and only one “yes” from God,” and that will be enough to see you through. ‘Yes in your life you see limitations, but God sees opportunities. You see failure, but God sees growth. You see problems, but God sees solutions. You see limitations, but God sees possibilities. You see this life… but God sees eternity.’

hope street

There is a time when everything you once feared comes to pass. When the things you told God you couldn’t handle, have come and gone. And yet you are still standing. Your trust has been tested. Your faith has been shaken. Your hope has been trampled. But hold fast!

“We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed!” “The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you with his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.” ”No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.”

Advertisements

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by KKW on January 30, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Excellent Piece. God bless.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: