The psalmist’s words became my personal prayer. Help me stay planted by the streams of Your water, God. Keep me from wickedness. Help me meditate on Your law day and night. Oh, how I longed to delight in God rather than wallow with Discouragement.
Every day started in His Word. Most days I didn’t understand what I read, but I believed in God’s faithfulness, and I noticed how Bible verses started to repeat in my head more than Discouragement’s voice. Determined to stay refreshed by God’s Word, like a tree planted by streams of water, I started to keep a Bible always within arm’s reach: in the car, beside my bed, on the end table by the couch, in the kitchen.
At one point, I had verses taped on nearly every doorframe in my house. I’m not sharing this to make myself sound super spiritual. I’m sharing this to show how desperate I was to defeat Discouragement, Negativity, and Rejection.
My victory has taken years to realize. The battle has been slow, but every time I read and meditate on Scripture, I gain ground. Every now and then, Discouragement sets a trap; however, with God’s wisdom, I am able to avoid it. I shout my victory chant, “No weapon formed against me will prosper.” The bullies flee. I praise. Why don’t you shout the victory chant aloud right now? Go ahead. I’ll wait.
David dealt with criticism from his wife and negativity from his brothers, but he didn’t allow Discouragement to defeat him. He stayed close to God, and he cried out every time he needed help. We are blessed to be able to cry out to God for help and search His Word for inspiration.
Sometimes the totality and enormity of God’s Word can be overwhelming. Have you ever felt this way? You know encouragement will come from Scripture, but when you open the Bible, you don’t know how to find the encouragement that awaits. When I have this feeling, I create my own mini-Bible.
Using my Bible’s concordance, I look up a word that has something to do with my current state of mind and circumstances. For example, if I am feeling rejected, I find the word love and look up verses about God’s love. Then, in a small spiral-bound notebook, I record every verse that lifts my heart. This mini-Bible becomes my go-to place for quick encouragement.
God was faithful to David. God will be faithful to you and me as well.
“But he said to me, “My grace is enough for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” So then, I will boast most gladly about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may reside in me.”
2 Corinthians 12:9 NET
“I repeat, be strong and brave! Don’t be afraid and don’t panic, for I, the LORD your God, am with you in all you do.””
Joshua 1:9 NET