Defeating Discouragement

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Turn your disappointment to God, and He can restore your hope.

Nehemiah 2:1-8

Discouragement can rob peace, joy, and contentment. But I have great news if you feel disheartened: You need not be stuck!

I’ve known people who appeared to be in impossible situations. A few years later, however, they were in a terrific place, either in terms of their circumstances or their emotions. The reason? They never gave up. Instead of sulking in self-pity, they chose to believe God and step out in faith. In that way, they did not remain entrenched in an emotional pit.

Nehemiah is a good example. He had every reason to feel defeated, because his people were in trouble. After receiving news that the city wall had been destroyed, this man of God acknowledged profound disappointment and grieved. Yet doing so was risky, because sadness in the presence of royalty was punishable by death.

Though pain flooded his soul, Nehemiah didn’t allow himself to stay in that low place. Instead, he cried out to God for direction. And the Lord answered with amazing power, prompting the king to notice his servant’s sad countenance and then to ask what he could do to help. This miracle led to the rebuilding of the wall and the redemption of God’s people.

The Lord can take an impossible situation—no matter what it is—and move in ways mightier than you can imagine. Do you live in eager expectation of what the Lord will do? Or have you chosen to linger in the depths of despair? Like Nehemiah, turn your disappointment into a petition for God’s help. He can restore your hope and prevent negative emotions from gaining a stranglehold on your life.

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