Athlete, Conquer Discouragement
Psalms 27:13-14 (NASB)
I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.
Sam (not his real name) was a middle-round draft pick in the NFL. He excelled in the rookie mini-camp in April, earned respect from his position coach during summer workouts and opened training camp expecting to claim a roster spot.
Sam never missed a chapel or team Bible study; he was always engaged in learning to walk with God.
When camp ended, Sam didn’t make the 53-man roster, but was re-signed to the practice squad. He worked as hard as any teammate, but being on the practice squad eliminated him from the sideline on game days.
Discouragement grew with each passing week. He eventually replaced the weekly team Bible study with a weekly escape to the local clubs.
Discouragement detoured Sam’s focus and direction in life. We all face discouragement, most often because of lost expectations and unwelcome circumstances.
Discouragement is usually connected to time. How much longer, Lord? When, Lord? The longer God seems silent, the more likely we question His goodness.
We will always hear voices that question God’s character. If God is sovereign (He can do anything He wants) and omnipotent (all-powerful), why has He not changed my circumstances or answered my hopes and dreams?
He is the easy One to blame. We conclude that if God is able to do something, but doesn’t do it, then His goodness must be in question.
The Psalmist reminds us that it was his belief that God is good that kept him from despair. It enables us to wait. It is a decision to hold off on wrongly assessing God’s silence in a matter.
Discouragement is a lifelong battle that we must fight with His strength and courage.
The Psalmist says, “Just wait, take courage.”
Tom Petersburg | www.catapultministries.org