At least seven times in the New Testament (NASB) we are told how important it is not to lose heart (Luke 18:1; 2 Cor 4:1, 16; Gal 6:9; Eph 3:13; Col 3:21; Heb 12:3). Indeed, as Christians it is extremely important that we do not allow discouragement to weigh us down and cause us to give up.
Someone once said that discouragement is the most favorite tool that the devil uses to cause Christians to fall away from God and I believe it! Sadly, countless numbers of Christians over the years have given up serving the Lord because they “lost heart.” Whether it is was a besetting sin, a fiery trial of some kind, or the lack of “results” in doing God’s work, somehow they decided that there was no point in trying anymore. They became weary or exhausted and gave up hope. Have you ever felt that way? How can we prevent this from happening? How do we not “lose heart”?
Look to Jesus: “For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary and lose heart” (Heb. 12:3). Everyday we need to consider what Jesus did for us so that we could be saved. Jesus did not give up on us, neither should we give up on Him!
Look to Eternity: “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.” (2 Cor. 4:16). We will lose heart if we lose sight of our eternal home in Heaven. This world is not all there is. We must look at the things that are “not seen” or eternal everyday (2 Cor. 4:18).
Look to Your Brethren: “Take care, brethren, lest there should be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart, in falling away from the living God. But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin” (Heb 3:12-13). Isolation from other Christians can be devastating to the heart. Seek out spiritually-minded brethren and keep company with them often. Everyone needs encouragement!By Mark E. Larson
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