Some times in life things just simply get frustrating and discouraging. This is true for the newborn Christians as much as it is for the seasoned saint. It can affect anyone from the average layperson to the experienced minister of the Word. What do you do to get out of this spiritual valley? I believe one of the best ways to come out of this season in your life and keep up the good fight for the sake of the Kingdom and the glory of God is to remember . . .
Remember Your Salvation:
Remember that the Lord saved you when you did not deserve to be saved. However, because of His love for you, he called you out of your sinful life to make you an instrument for him and give you a fully abundant life. Remember that you are saved by God’s grace. You were not just saved from something (yourself, and God’s wrath) but to something (good works). When life gets frustrating, remember the sweet feeling of freedom the day the Lord called you to himself and you responded by faith.
Remember Your Calling:
God has not told you to bring great results, but to be faithful to the calling that he has given you (2 Thess. 1:11). Results are his part of the deal. Great numbers of salvation and disciples are great, but Jesus was still faithful in his calling even when all his disciples left him, Peter denied him, and his Father turned from him. There are seasons when our life seems to flourish, and other times when it seems, in our eyes, to fail. Nevertheless, if you are being faithful to God and allowing his Word to guide you in your decisions, then “do not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).
Remember Your First Love:
It is so easy to get so caught up in the small details that we forget the big ones. Even if everything else in your life fails you, the Lord never will. During a season of life when things are hard, press closer to the Lord. Be in his Word. Worship him in song. Surround yourself with those who love you, but love the Lord even more. Love your spouse well (if you have one). Love your children well (if the Lord has blessed you with any), and rest in the fact that the Lord chose you for something. He didn’t just save you and leave you alone, but he saved you and desires an ongoing relationship with you. He is your first love . . . and the one that will never disappoint you (when you delight in him first and die to yourself).
So brothers and sisters, I hope that when you look back and remember that you can find rest in the Lord, but also be rejuvenated to take a fresh look at what the Lord is trying to tell you in the midst of your frustration. Often the Lord uses these things in our lives to grow the fruits of the Spirit in us and conform us to his image. Don’t fight that . . . just pray for wisdom and wait upon the Lord.
Soli Deo Gloria,
Adam B. Burrell