Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts. ~Jeremiah 15:16
Discouragement is when we are saddened and hurt in our spirit by adverse developments in our life or the life of someone else. When discouragement sets in, we withdraw from social contact, pitch a pity party, lose our desires, lose our appetites, and in some cases, develop sleeplessness. The worst thing about discouragement is that we can become spiritually blinded and forgetful. Times of discouragement can cause us to move away from the Lord. Everyone can get discouraged! This morning, let us see how Jeremiah dealt with discouragement in his life.
We see the painful DISCIPLINE.
The Jews and the city of Jerusalem were under censure by the Lord for their continuous and unrepentant sins. When King Manasseh ruled, he made them do worse than all the preceding kings. Idolatrous altars were in every house and visible in many public areas. The Jews failed to give the land Sabbath rest every seventh year. Their consciences were defiled and far from God. God pronounced a series of judgments against the people. These judgments would consist of the sword, famine, captivity, and death. When we read Jer. 15:1-9, we see that God’s hand of chastening and discipline would be heavy upon the Jews. “For who shall have pity upon thee, O Jerusalem? or who shall bemoan thee? or who shall go aside to ask how thou doest? Thou hast forsaken me, saith the LORD, thou art gone backward: therefore will I stretch out my hand against thee, and destroy thee; I am weary with repenting,” Jer. 15:5-6. When we refuse to repent of our sins and go further away from God, His hand of chastening will come upon us to correct us and bring us back.
We see the prophet’s DISCOURAGEMENT.
Jeremiah was greatly discouraged concerning the events to come. He was discouraged that even if Samuel and Moses were to pray for this people, God would not change His mind. He was discouraged that people would die, the city would be invaded and destroyed, and many would be taken into captivity. He was even more discouraged that he had to bring this bad news to the people, and that they would reject and persecute him. He was so discouraged about his birth and purpose. He said, “Woe is me, my mother, that thou hast borne me a man of strife and a man of contention to the whole earth!” He was the bearer of bad news and nobody wanted him! He was not only complaining out loud, but he was complaining to God! Discouragement leads to doubts about God. Discouragement causes us to rethink what we are doing, and we desire to quit. Discouragement clouds our judgment, and we lose focus on why all these things are happening to us! Are you discouraged? Are you at a place where you question what are doing? Are you disillusioned because things are not turning out like you thought they would?
We see a personal DISCOVERY.
Jeremiah was in the blues and at the bottom of the ocean, so to speak. How do you deal with discouragement? Jeremiah made an important discovery. “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts.” Jeremiah did the one thing all of us should do when discouragement is knocking at our door: get to the Word of God! Thy words were found! He found words of assurance! He found words of encouragement! He found words about God’s greatness! He said, “I did eat them.” He didn’t just read the Word; he got the Word of God into his life. How do you get encouraged when you are discouraged? Discover God’s Word again! How do you get back your joy and rejoicing when you are discouraged? Discover God’s Word again! When he got back to the Word, he remembered the calling of God in his life, and regained his focus and vision.
Don’t let discouragement get you out of focus in your calling, purpose, and duty. Discover the fresh truths and promises from God’s Word, eat them, and live above your discouragement.
Have a Word-filled God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 1 Kings 18-20