Ps.142:3 (TPT) “For when I was desperate, overwhelmed, and about to give up, you were the only one there to help. You gave me a way of escape from the hidden traps of my enemies.”
When it comes to discouragement, there are two big ways discouragement damages. If we understand these two ways, then we are better positioned to adjust our sails, adjust ourselves and triumph. The first way discouragement causes damage is, it side-tracks us from really living. Discouragement attempts to take us out of life’s path. People get discouraged and they throw pity parties, or just get under a blanket, eat and watch movies all day and cry. It is a trap.
The second big way discouragement causes damage is, it makes us more vulnerable to temptation. When you are discouraged, your emotional barriers are down. When your emotional barriers are lowered, you are more likely to give in to temptation. Think of the times you gave in to temptation; you were most likely discouraged. You decide to work out, to lose some weight and get healthy. The harder you work out and sweat, the more it seems like the weight is not moving. Then someone shows up with a bucket of ice-cream or offers you a meal at past midnight. And you pick up a spoon and help yourself. It is at the point of discouragement that we are most vulnerable to temptation.
You are fasting then you get bad news at work, or you have a challenge with your child. Then you say what is the point, I am going to eat. And because you are discouraged, you give in to temptation, ready to call anybody’s bluff, even Pastor. Just when you are to go for a reunion of your classmates, you get discouraged by your spouse. Your spouse just won’t listen to you or spend time with you. Meanwhile, there is this secondary school classmate that is showering you with compliments and attention. Then you think to yourself, “I might as well”; the four words that break down resistance.
Honestly, sometimes church folks can be funny. It gets to a point that the people you are fasting for are the very people giving you the most resistance. Sometimes, you look at the sacrifices you are making, and it appears that the results are not commensurate. Then the dangerous four words show up and you say, ‘I might as well’. We all need to know that it is at the point of discouragement that we are most vulnerable to temptation.
Prayer: Holy Spirit, because I have You, I will not become overwhelmed by discouragement. Please show me the way of escape from every discouragement, in Jesus Name. Amen!