Do You Get Discouraged Easily?

I do.  Probably too easily.

Especially when it comes to my writing.  I just don’t have the confidence in my abilities to do it “right” I guess.

My blog.  My column.  My unpublished works.  Is any of it really good or are people just being nice?  Does any of it serve a purpose?

Diane lovingly told me my heart’s on my sleeve and I am too sensitive.  This is true.  Have been my whole life.  I don’t like criticism.  It cuts something deep for whatever childhood reason.

Yet I keep doing it.  Can’t stop really.  Prompted by God.  Or seeking some kind of approval or validation.  From others.  From Him.  Like a published book in print.  “Then I’ll truly be a writer.”

Got my answer though to BSF postings from BSF themselves buried in the notes for Lesson 2.  Paraphrasing it says technology has opened up previously closed doors to sharing the gospel with others all over the world.

All of this has a purpose and a reason for preparing me for whatever God has in store for me in the future.

And I believe this of you all as well.  We’re all here.  Learning from each other. Encouraging each other.  Sharing our life’s frustrations and desires and our walk. Fighting the Devil every step of the way.  Growing.  Maturing.  Being.

I pray for you all daily; that you find whatever you are seeking (be it here or elsewhere) and you continue marching forward doing God’s call on your life despite the inevitable setbacks and complications that accompany us all.

In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

9 thoughts on “Do You Get Discouraged Easily?

  1. This made me cry. Not a big sobbing cry but a “thank you, God, I’m not alone” cry. It was this huge answered prayer that you said was buried in next week’s lesson (for me) regarding technology. I feel like such an alien in my leaders’ group, in my city, in my church, in my neighborhood. The funny thing is that even today, I was so excited to delve in and start Acts. I decided to try what one of your posters does…the Word document, Gateway (which I was already using half the time anyway), and well, yeah. I looked up and pasted all the Scripture for the week, hand typed the lesson in with it because I’m clueless about how to copy and paste something that won’t allow it…I suspect she scanned the BSF lesson and then moved it but I type really fast so it wasn’t a burden. I went to print it feeling guilty about the ink and all that paper but wanting to be able to quickly reference ALL the Scripture at once while doing my lesson. I wanted to do it despite knowing that because of Leaders Meeting, I would have to condense my answers and put them in the tiny blocks of the original lesson because…well, it would be frowned on in my group to do otherwise. I hit print. Ran out of paper while printing which meant waiting until my husband comes home because it’s not just a matter of sticking more paper back in and turning it on and I feel so stupid even writing all this. I was just discouraged. I feel stupid feeling discouraged. There are people so hungry for the Lord all over this world that they walk miles to get to class. I’m sitting in a huge air conditioned home with all kinds of gadgets and appliances and I’m gloomy as Eyeore because the printer ran out of paper.

    I met a friend for lunch who has lived all over the world. I was feeling bad about the morning’s incident with the stupid printer (it’s not stupid…I am) and discouraged because I realized that most of my friends are not practicing Christians. In the old days in other cities, I was present as more than one accepted Christ. I realized that I had been friends with this wonderful woman for almost 12 years. She rejected her Baptist heritage long ago. At one point she said if she was anything, she’d be Buddhist. (They spent many years in Asia.) I felt discouraged and confused as I thought on the fact that three of my best friends in this world are not churched and have I had that little influence on them? We had met to visit some resale shops that benefit Domestic Violence shelters. I picked up a couple of cookbooks for a buck each. She picked up a copy of The Book of Mormon. I teased her and asked her if she was vetting some of the candidates for president. She looked taken aback. I then, backing up, asked if she had ever read it. I lived in the mountain west at one point and well, if you want to stand any chance of having a real impact on lives, you need knowledge. I can’t tell you how I felt. She knows I attend BSF. She knows I am a leader. I was so discouraged when I left our resale hunt. Have I made that little impact? Was this even about me? Was this even about religion or lifestyle?

    Should I stop being friends with these women I love? It’s not like they are a bad influence on me in any way and I keep praying that they will come to know the Lord in a real, meaningful way. So…I’m discouraged and taking stock. I’m trying to put my cheerful back on and step out on faith.

    I saw a sermon on TV where the pastor said that he went swimming in a public pool in Charlotte while visiting his grandmother. Carelessly, and not knowing how to swim, he jumped in on that blazing hot summer day with the brashness of youth. Immediately, he realized he was in trouble and began flailing and going down. One, two. Each time he heard a deep male voice say, “Stand up.” He knew for sure he was drowning. The third time, he heard, “For God’s sake, Man, put your feet down and stand up. It’s only four feet deep.” He put his feet down and indeed, felt the bottom. Humiliated, he climbed out to laughter and walked all the way home in shame. The whole congregation laughed but he said, “It’s true. Stand up. Stop whining and stand up!”

    Acts of the Apostles is going to be amazing. We just need to kick the gloom off and accept that this where God has placed us and we need to STAND UP. You’re writing for a newspaper. That’s standing up. You’re writing for all of us. That’s standing up. If you wrote your own version of the Harry Potter series and became world famous, would you still love Jesus Christ with every fiber of your being? Would you be standing for Him or for yourself? Sometimes, I’ve gotten so discouraged about so many things in my life and in the the lives of my children…how could this one get so close to the very tip top of the pinnacle of success in that sport and then, be denied…how could this brilliant one find one closed door after another? “But what if they gain the world and lose their soul?” I’m standing up. My prayer is for them to love Jesus Christ with their whole hearts, souls, and minds.

    I believe that God is using His people even today. He is using you and he is using Diane and all your other blog responders and the quiet ones who are just readers and the organization of BSF around the world and he’s even using me.

    The volunteer coordinator I had not heard from just called me and she’s excited and can’t wait to meet me. So…answered prayer!

    I’m so grateful for BSF and for you. And I’m glad for answered prayer.

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    1. Awesome, Sweet Mama! Thanks for taking the time to share.

      I’ve had a similar printer problem–this time it was changing the cartridge. I had to wait until my husband got home to help me and then it seemed dumb once he did it so easily.

      We all have our gifts and figuring out gadgets is definitely not mine–nor yours it seems!

      But the littlest thing can be discouraging and ruin our day. Thanks for a great reminder of what’s important in this life!

      I’m grateful for you as well. Do take care.

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  2. I understand . . . I get all of the scriptures for each lesson and print them out on paper for both myself and my husband. It is such a help . . . technology is not a bad thing . . . just letting it become an idol is 😉

    Discouragement is a real issue . . . we need to view ourselves the way God sees us, not others, not ourselves. It is very hard to do that when we live in a society that tells us everything should make us happy . . . when in reality our joy is to come from a fullness of relationship with the Lord.

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    1. “It is very hard to do that when we live in a society that tells us everything should make us happy”…NO KIDDING!!! I wonder how much of our discouragement and despair and frustration comes from that expectation of “everybody gets a trophy” or recognition or a medal or an accolade. You really nailed that for me today, Lisa. “Our joy is to come from the fullness of a relationship with Jesus Christ.”

      I really want to get done with Lesson I so I can read what all you guys have learned!

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      1. Your welcome . . . AtoZ always gets me thinking . . . that is what frustrates me and yet makes me like her blog. She poses thoughts which help us think . . . instead of telling us what to think . . . which I have a tendency to do.

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  3. Thanks for your post. Everytime when I received it, it is as though I am hearing from a distant friend telling me about her thoughts, her frustrations, her happy moments. Thanks for sharing.
    GOD bless…

    Josephine Than (MALAYSIA)

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  4. You can’t believe how much this touched my soul… I related to every word.
    Thank you for sharing your heart, your hopes, and your fears. We all are needy of God. Blessed are the ‘poor in spirit’ for theirs is the Kingdom.
    Thanks
    Jann (Alabama USA)

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  5. I love you even tho I don’t really know you. I feel your heart and your sincerity each day. You are Amazing, Talented, Thoughtful, Kind, Smart, A Fantastic Writer, and Loving Daughter of God! Some of the things I see in you! :0) Thank you for this Blog, I have for whatever reason this week have been going through a bout of anxiety, sadness, feeling like a failure and nothing I do matters. After doing this weeks first lesson in Acts and reading your blog, I realize it is the enemy attacking me and trying to discourage me and distract me away from the study. I finished it and give God all the praise and honor and glory. I know too that I walk by faith and not by feelings and even when my feelings are all in a tizzy, that God is the same today, yesterday and always. I get sad because most of my family don’t serve God and I am not close with them, also have a daughter who’s lifestyle isn’t Christlike and I worry about their souls. Sometimes it is overwhelming to me, but, I have to remember that the Holy Spirit is the one who draws us to himself and trust that they will know and serve Him someday. Thank you again, you bring me comfort and joy even in my despair.

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    1. Thank you, Juliette, for your amazing words. I feel that same way this week. I hate where I live and am praying with every spare moment for God to move me. I will be praying for you. Thank you for sharing your heart. God bless.

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