Monday, May 20, 2013


I've noticed recently that I've been battling some discouragement - nothing major, but just a low-grade sense of feeling like I'm not making headway, you know? I suspect every parent (every person?) goes through this now and then:
  • will the baby ever sleep through the night?
  • will the kids ever learn to speak kindly rather than scream?
  • no matter how much I work, the chores are never really done
  • when will I see growth in battling this sin area?
  • everything is changing - could someone please stop this crazy ride? I'd like to get off, please!
While the temptation to discouragement is normal, the question is what to then do I do with it? It can either drive me closer to Christ, the Source of all comfort, or it can beat me down and render me useless. I've been drifting toward the second direction - prayer and Bible reading becomes inconsistent, I'm quick to see the problems rather than the blessings, I'm quick to complain and grumble, rather than be thankful.

So, what do I do with this?
  • I go to my knees - the first step is seeing sin for what it is and repenting of it. For me, I'm aware that my own desire for comfort and ease is looming large in my eyes. Comfort and ease, however, are not what I am called to - I am called to a cross.
  • I go to the Word - we serve a God who has made Himself known to us in the Bible. That's amazing, when you really think about it. He Himself has said that "all Scripture is God-breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man (or woman!) of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Tim 3:16-17) In order to battle my discouragement and pride, I can be reminded:
    • not to grow weary, for in due season, I will reap a harvest of righteousness (Gal 6:9)
    • that even Jesus came, not to be served but to serve others, with his very life (Mark 10:45)
    • that following Jesus means not a stroll through a garden but the carrying of a cross (Luke 9:23)
    • that Jesus knows and understands my weakness, and He has made a way to come before the Father for help and hope (Heb 4:15-16)
  • I get busy - I do not live in a vacuum or a high-walled nunnery (sounds peaceful, though!), but in a house with 7 other sinners, in a church with needs, in a community that needs to see the love of Jesus demonstrated. The more time I spend sulking and navel-gazing, the less I am attending to the needs of those around me. All these imperfect, needy people around me (who aren't nearly as needy and imperfect as I am)? They are not interruptions to my real life - they are real life, and I am less likely to be distracted by all that I would do differently if I rolled up my sleeves and got busy with the work at hand.


Danielle said...

Good encouraging words, Kelly! I went through a huge round of discouragement/low grade depression in the fall. I've felt I've come out of that.

God has handed us a big dose of change on every front that can make me feel disoriented at times. But it has caused me to cling to Him and love Him more as I truly see His hand guiding us every step of the way. I have to say I CAN trace His hand and quite frankly, every detail is amazing.

reet said...

Thank you for this Kelly! Encouraging indeed! Although I don't yearn for others to struggle, it makes me take a step back and realize that altgough I may be struggling with discouragement, that I am not alone in this walk. Putting my selfishown sin before God is key. And Danielle, thank you for helping me to remembet God's hand!!!