<<hopelessness, despondency>>

While despair is the absence of hope, no circumstance is beyond God’s help and ability for good to come out of it.  Endeavour to maintain the correct perspective of a positive mental attitude understanding “All things work for

Do not lose heart – 2 Corinthians 4:16

our good”. We are to be thankful for them besides being assured of His presence with us always through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit (Mt 28:20; Rom 8:28; 1 Thes 5:18).  He is a loving God, and always in control – even if it doesn’t always appear that way with things not working out as we would like for we seldom see His purpose in the trials we are passing through because the Christian path is a walk of faith, not sight.  

After Job had suffered great loss he declared, “He knows the way I take; when He has tried me I shall come forth as pure gold”. Later Job received back beyond what he had lost (Job 23:10, 42:10-17).  Calamities are Gods refining fire to produce better character in us if we co-operate with Him for He desires moral strength not our comfort, so do not lose heart when He deals with you, instead keep in mind His end goal for you is holiness, righteousness and peace (Heb 12:5,10,11). Jesus, when insulted and suffering on the cross, committed Himself to God (who judges justly) and focused on the benefits that would come (1 Pet 2:23). We too should look beyond the pain of the present to the future benefits, like a woman in childbirth anticipating the precious life she will soon hold enabling her to endure the temporary agony (Jn 16:21). Depend on God at all times, especially in times of trouble (Ps 46:1, 121:1-8). 

David, when threatened with being stoned did not wallow in self-pity, but knew he was in God's hands and encouraged himself in the Lord (1 Sam 30:6). Paul and his companions were under great pressure and on one occasion even despaired of life, yet later stated that although persecuted and perplexed they were not demoralized for God’s power was sustaining them as they relied not on their own selves but on Him (2 Cor 1:8,9, 4:7,8).

Satan would try to get our eyes off the victory we have in Christ, and focus on our own impotent ability, which soon crumbles under his attack when we are not in vital relationship with the Saviour of our souls (Jn 15:4,6; 1 Pet 5:8). The Bible's advice is to "Look unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith" (Heb 12:2). Don’t give up when the storm clouds appear. Be determined to “Fight the good fight

Keep your eyes on Jesus, not the circumstances

of faith” so you too can say, “I have fought well, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith” (1 Tim 6:12; 2 Tim 4:7). For any person who has been cleansed from sin by the blood of Jesus and is walking uprightly there is no lasting defeat or despair as heaven will be their home. So keep your eyes off the problem and on Christ the solution, confident that God knows all about this situation. His power not limited and, while in love is permitting you to gain a richer faith, your mind is being protected through the hope of salvation (1 Thes 5:8). Look at the blessings already received, not at what you don’t have. Recall His past blessings being confident of what He has started in you He is well able to bring to a satisfactory conclusion (Phil 1:6). Seek spiritual and professional help as necessary to assist you to throw off this paralyzing disorder. Do not make any major long-term decision when in this frame of mind.

Am I desperate enough to seek God with my whole heart (Ps 63:1, 119:2; Jer 29:13)? The Psalmist wrote, "...they were at their wits' end. Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress" (Ps 107:6,27,28). "But in their distress they turned to the Lord, the God of Israel, and sought Him and He was found by them" (2 Chr 15:4).

See also: attention, contentment, deliverance, depression, discouragement, give up, hope, hopeless, perspective, positive mental attitude, praise, self-pity, victory.