Discouragement & Hope

Today’s blog is written by Bonnie Russman. Read as she shares what to do when we are discouraged.

Today’s Reading
“For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.”
-Romans 15:4 – NASB

Have you ever been discouraged? Each of us has probably experienced some form of discouragement at one time or another; I certainly have. We’ve all felt sad, let down or disappointed, but true discouragement goes deeper than mere surface feelings. The dictionary defines discouragement as the loss of confidence or courage – to be disheartened. True discouragement is in many ways akin to a broken heart.

As Christ followers, we know that He dwells in our hearts, along with our own faith in Him, and hope, and love. And if the joy of the Lord is our strength, how could a child of God lose these precious gifts and give way to discouragement? Sometimes we forget, for a moment, that our powerful, loving, faithful God is with us and in us, and our eyes focus instead on our own issues that appear shrouded in hopelessness. We allow ourselves to believe that the moment or season we currently endure is our reality, and we turn inward, enduring it alone and believing the lie – tempted to give in to despair.

In my own life, such times might have overwhelmed me had it not been for the Word of God. He alone has the words of eternal life, and there is hope in Him. He heals the brokenhearted. His written Word is truth – our actual reality – and scripture is where we must always turn in our time of greatest need.

For as long as my season of discouragement lasts, God tells me through His Word that He is with me and will never leave me, and that waiting on Him brings strength. He assures me of ultimate victory because He is in me and has already won the battle and overcome the world. He reminds me that I am loved, cherished, and valued no matter how I might feel. He promises that when I turn to Him, He will turn to me – period. Indeed, the Word of God is my precious hiding place, my strong tower where I can run and be safe, the lamp that lights my path, the unshakeable truth that is forever settled in heaven; my teacher, my mirror, my constant companion, and my miracle of salvation. 

Reflection
“Remember the word to Thy servant, in which thou has made me hope.”
-Psalm 119:49

No matter what you may be going through today, God’s Word can help! Plunge yourself into that wonderful source of life-giving truth without delay and let hope and healing come into your heart. Know for sure, all that you are and all that you have in Him. Ponder these things, hide them in your heart, persevere, and you will know the meaning of “the encouragement of the scriptures!”

Prayer
Dear Father, I am so very thankful for your Word, for its power and truth, and for the gifts and promises that are available to me there. Open my heart and mind and make me worthy to receive you, O Lord. Only say the word and I shall be healed.