Saturday September 18, 2004
InTouch Early Light Devotional
Discouragement is far more than an inconvenience to be ignored. It is a deadly enemy to be resisted with all the resources at our command. Left unchecked, discouragement can have disastrous consequences. It can create an inner gnawing that dominates our outlook so thoroughly that we lose our focus and our mind becomes divided. At that point, we can begin to look for someone to blame - we can become consumed by thoughts of who was disloyal or who let us down. From this soil of deep disappointment will spring weeds of anger at our circumstances, at God, or at other people. If we continue down this road, we will eventually wind up estranged from those around us and convinced that we are fatally flawed and hopelessly handicapped.
In the midst of this hardship and pain, however, there is a way out. We don't have to surrender to our emotions. We can cry out to the Father and acknowledge that He is with us, loving us unconditionally. We can remember that God has promised to work even our present situation for something good. (Romans 8:28) We can affirm His sovereignty and restate our willingness to be under His control and authority.
Are you sinking into the mire of discouragement? Allow God to lift you out and set your feet on the Rock - He Himself wants to be your solid footing. (Psalm 40:2) As you make the choice to shift your focus away from disappointments and onto your heavenly Father, you will begin to notice a positive change in your outlook on life.
What if you and Dr. Charles Stanley could study God's Word together, one-on-one, at your own pace, and in the comfort of your own home? Now you can! Enroll today at the Charles Stanley Institute For Christian Living. www.charlesstanleyinstitute.com
For broadcast schedules, outlines, expanded studies, audio, and video of Dr. Stanley's sermons, visit In Touch's Broadcast page: http://www.intouch.org/myintouch/broadcasts/index_76108.html.