Overcoming Discouragement

Ps. 42-43


Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me?


Let me give you some startling news, God's people don't always have smiles on their faces; unless they are like clowns and paint them on.  And they don't only speak words of encouragement and hope.  Sometimes they fall prey to discouragement or fear or depression.   


That is normal.  After all, God's people are people.  We live in a world that is full of people and all of them are products of the fall.  BUT there is a difference when discouragement or depression comes upon Christians.  Listen friends, unlike the unbelievers, we aren’t held captive by those feelings.  We have a means of escape.  We have the Lord Jesus Christ. 
In Psalms 42 and 43 the psalmist expresses his feelings honestly – and they are rather dark feelings.  He writes: My tears have been my food day and night . . . I say to God my Rock, "Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?”  I guess these sentiments (or ones like them) come to all of our minds at times.  Sometimes it does seem that the enemy is winning.  But he isn’t.  God hasn’t forgotten us.  Remember, Christ Himself promised: “I will be with you always.”   He hasn’t gone anywhere.  Our feelings come and go and change like the tide.  God, on the other hand, is always the same, always faithful.  The Psalmist’s condition and his conclusion are wrapped up in this statement that occurs 3 times in these two psalms:“Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”  He doesn’t claim that his discouragement isn’t real.  He does imply, however, that it isn’t necessary.  There is a solution:
"Put your hope in God."  Our hope is not only in God; our hope is God.  Jesus Christ is our Savior.  He is the lover of our souls.  And He is the Sovereign Lord.  Whatever the source of our trouble, Christ is greater; He will get us through it.  And on the other side there is cause to rejoice.  “ . . . for I will yet praise Him!” 
The best way to a quick recovery – praise Him for it now!


Pastor Keith Andrews