So last week, like so many other baseball fans, I was pretty discouraged after the first inning of the ALCS game 5, when the Toronto Blue Jays quickly fell behind the Cleveland Indians. You now know, unless you’ve been living under a rock, that the Jays were eliminated and the baseball season for the Jays and their adoring fans came to an end.
It was pretty depressing.
Then, as I flipped through the stations I found the Leafs playing. It was great hockey and my other team in blue were quickly up 4-0. Fantastic. Hope. During the intermission, I flipped through the channels again and stopped to watch the Presidential Debate. I knew that the intermission would be over soon, but honestly, I could not avert my eyes. It was like watching a train wreck. These Presidential candidates were rolling their eyes, darting innuendo’s, and making straight-out rude comments. If they had been in a classroom back in my day the two of them would have been given a time-out for bad behaviour.
It was pretty discouraging.
After the conclusion of the Presidential debate I went back to the hockey game to discover that the Leafs lost in overtime 5-4.
It was all pretty discouraging.
I turned off the television and went to bed.
We can be discouraged by a great number of things - sporting teams, the state of affairs in our neighbouring country, the political situation in our own country, or the blatant injustices in other parts of the world.
If you were here on Sunday, we asked the question, “What do you do when you find yourself discouraged?” and “What does God’s word tell us?”
Great questions, aren't they?
I love what God says through His prophet Haggai, in Haggai 2:4.
"Be strong, all you people of the land", declares the Lord, "and work."
You be strong and keep going:
- Be strong and keep praying, even when you don't see results;
- Be strong and continue to do the right thing, even when you're not getting anywhere;
- Be strong and continue to love even when other people are not loving in return;
- Be strong and continue to love your spouse, even when your spouse is unresponsive;
- Be strong and continue to love and pray for your children even when they continue to make bad choices;
- Be strong and show up;
- Be strong and stay in the game;
- Be strong and never, ever give up.
God says, "Be strong and do the work”, but I absolutely love the next line. It says, "For I am with you", declares the Lord.
Don’t miss this: You are not alone, you are loved by an amazing God. (Check out this great song.) God promises to never leave you or forsake you. So, if you get discouraged keep going, be strong, do the work and remember God says, I AM WITH YOU!
Soon that discouragement will lose the “dis” and the “ment” and what you have left is courage! For God is with you!
Join us this Sunday as we conclude our series on Haggai. If you missed any, check out the messages on the website.
Come and bring a friend!