Friday, March 2, 2012

Do not be discouraged

The devil is so clever and it is so frustrating to me. I realize this isn't a novel thought, but it is something I was faced with literally moments ago. I was sitting at work thinking about the things that I am thankful for today. I wrote down things like: "getting a possible babysitting job with an awesome family that I am hoping to get to know better," "getting an exciting opportunity to serve in a unique way," and "pleasant callers at work."
Literally, as I wrote those words the phone rang. I said the usual prayer in my head for God to make the caller kind and understanding and to give me the words to say to soothe any frustrated callers. As soon as I said hello the woman on the other end started in on me about an article in today's paper about postal service workers. (I frequently get callers that want to vent their anger on someone and don't realize that I am not the person they need to talk to because I have little to no control over much here.) I listened to her rant and when she paused for me to explain I politely asked her to hold, to which she agreed. I turned to ask someone a question and picked the phone back up to transfer her to someone who could help her. When I picked up the line she was still talking, either not realizing she was on hold or talking to someone else, I'm not sure which! I explained that I was going to transfer her to Kathy who would be able to help her and she hung up on me.

I could easily blame God for not giving me what I asked for, or for proving me wrong in being thankful for nice callers, or I could acknowledge what is really happening. The devil is trying to steal my thankfulness and cause me to doubt my God's love for me.

So in the name and power of Jesus I proclaim that the devil will not win this fight. I refuse to believe the lies that he whispers into my mind of doubt and discouragement.
Last night a friend posted a verse on facebook and asked readers to read it with fresh eyes and find something new from it. The verse is "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

I usually take this verse to be a call to be courageous and trust in God, but last night, the new thought that hit me like a ton of bricks right to the heart was "do not be discouraged". Discouragement is so prevalent in my life lately. I allow the devil to tell me lies and keep me from realizing the grace of God and how much God truly wants to bless me and not punish me, even though I deserve the punishments over the blessings.

So I want to empower you today: "DO NOT BE DISCOURAGED, FOR THE LORD YOUR GOD WILL BE WITH YOU WHEREVER YOU GO!" Isn't that great?!

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