I really hadn’t had a very good day! I spent most of the day down and discouraged. Why was I feeling this way? Lord, I need your grace today! Please bring me out of this place.
I spent a portion of the day feeling alone, feeling sorry for myself, feeling so very discouraged. I just laid across my bed? Why do I get like this?
It has been my experience that I get down and discouraged because of my own expectations. You can name any situation or circumstance, and what discourages me is when things don’t go according to my expectations. I will always have my own will, my own desires, and my own expectations. Then when circumstances don’t go according to my wishes, I end up feeling discouraged. I have discovered this as a pattern when I am discouraged.
Human emotions are a very real part of the human heart. Yet, our life is not to be dominated by our emotions. So, how do we get out of the discouragement? How do we successfully keep our emotions from controlling us?
Again, through the years, I have learned that these truths always help me:
1. Look up: Psalm 121 says: I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. The only secret that I have ever found is to look away from the circumstance and my expectation and look up to The Lord. A simple, but sincere, prayer asking for grace to help me press on, coupled with faith, trusting that He will, makes all the difference. Our Lord, in Hebrews 4:16, says: Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. But I must trust that He will! Truly His grace is sufficient!
2. Look in: After I look to The Lord and His grace, I must look to truth. I must look, not at my expectation or the circumstance, but to the Scriptures, either in the Bible itself or in my memory as Scriptures come to mind. I must bring my thoughts into truth. I must cling to truth, forcing out wrong thoughts. Again, wrapped in a prayer for the grace to walk here, I must rest in truth.
3. Get up: Then, I must make myself get up and get out. Even if my emotions are not yet under control, I must go forward, trusting that The Lord will give me the grace as I go. I can’t let my mind return to the discouraging thoughts. I have also found so many times that if I will get up and do something for someone else, somewhere along the way His grace takes hold, the joy returns, and I can truly go forward. The discouragement has faded away.
So, what did I do as I laid across that bed? I feebly offered up a prayer for His grace, thought upon Scriptures that came to mind, and got up, got out, got in my car to go do a kindness for someone else. It always amazes me. As I go, God’s grace floods my heart. He is so faithful! He never ceases to humble me and amaze me! Truly His grace is sufficient! Thank you, Lord, for Your throne of grace!
Be strong and of good courage;
be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed:
for The Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.