Discouragement, to deprive of courage, is awful. Discouragement is a cancer that eats at our soul. It saps our energy and our hope; it causes us to want to quit. When discouragement gains the upper hand, we can think we have no purpose in life…. why even bother.
Discouragement is based on a lie. Like every lie, it may have an element of truth.
- “Gee, I flunked that test, therefore I’m stupid and will never get a decent job….” Well it may be true I flunked that test, but the rest is false.
- “ Lu Lu doesn’t like me and thinks I’m a creep; no one will ever love me…..” LuLu may think I’m a creep, but the rest is a lie.
- “ The country and world is falling apart, there is no hope.” Well, things may be falling apart, but our hope is in Christ, not in this world.
- “That sin tends to cling too closely to me, I’ll never gain victory over it.” The sin may be hanging on to me, but Christ Jesus our Lord will have the final word…and that word will be forgiveness, mercy, and victory.
Have courage my brothers and sisters, the Lord is at hand. God almighty loves us. The savior of the world loves us. All will be well with our soul, so let’s lift up our head.
For many years we’ve had a habit in our community of “honoring and encouraging” one another on the anniversary of our baptism. We first honor them for being a “son or daughter of God.” To be a child of God is the highest honor, the greatest dignity…. a son of our Father in heaven…. our soul with the indelible seal of baptism. God knows our name. We are of the greatest value to him. Our Father sent his only son to the earth in order to redeem us from our sins…. the Good News.
We next encourage the person for the character traits of Christ that we see in them… their integrity, honesty, peacefulness, hope, joy, kindness…. their love. By speaking the truth to them, we give them courage. As courage increases, discouragement flees. We all need to be encouraged…. frequently, even daily.
I love the St. John Henry Newman quote, “God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission.” God has given you and me a mission which he has not given to another. We are not some “backup, some sub” that doesn’t matter. You and I are important to the plan of God. Perhaps we have been in training up to now and have not accomplished this mission yet…but let’s get ready. Let’s open our eyes. We are important to the mission of God.
Be encouraged son and daughter of God, the Lord is at hand. Look up, the Lord is pointing to you…”now is your time”. Be encouraged !!!