Psalms 42:5-8 NLT
Why am I discouraged?
Why is my heart so sad?
I will put my hope in God!
I will praise him again— my Savior and my God! Now I am deeply discouraged,
but I will remember you—
even from distant Mount Hermon,
the source of the Jordan,
from the land of Mount Mizar.
I hear the tumult of the raging seas
as your waves and surging tides sweep over me.
But each day the lord pours his unfailing love upon me,
and through each night I sing his songs,
praying to God who gives me life.
This life is not a bowl of cherries. God is not a genie that we rub our lamp and expect to never face trials or struggles.
But it is the state of my heart, my attitude, that makes all the difference in how I handle my circumstances. When I have faith, I have hope, even in the darkest hour.
It is encouraging to me that the Bible demonstrates that even the Psalmist faced discouragement, and even all but Jesus Christ fall short in certain areas of their lives.
I’ve set my goal on the example of the life of Christ, seeking to live a righteous and renewed life – but I am not living this life out of obligation trying to earn some kind of favor. No, my inheritance is intact, my salvation is complete, I am not trying to earn anything – I’m living my life in grattitude, in living praise.
And yes, I stumble. I face discouragement. I encounter sickness. I face struggles physically, financially, emotionally – but I have a God that promises that He will never leave me. And I find that when I draw close to him in praise, my Spirit is renewed in His strength, and I am reminded of hope, and mercy, and forgiveness – and I am encouraged to keep moving forward, one foot in front of the other.
His promises are true. These waves that crash against me serve to strengthen me when I draw my strength from the Lord – or I will be tumbled and tossed by them as a lesson when I try to do this all on my own.
So let me remember to praise Him, because He inhabits my praise.
So let me remember to pray continually, because I must be listening in order to hear.
So let me remember to spend time in His Word, because it is the bread of life that feed me.
So let me remember to surrender daily, because in Christ all things are possible, even victory overcoming my obstacles and challenges.
So let me remember to love, honor, respect and serve those around me, because how I value others demonstrates how I value God’s presence in my life.
And let me remember to show mercy, forgiveness, charity and hospitality to others, because isn’t this the example that Christ gave me – He loved me, even when I was unlovable.