TODAY'S WORD FOR Monday, December 17, 2018:
A feeling of being deprived of courage, hope or confidence, feeling disheartened, dismayed, hopeless or downcast.
But God, who comforts those that are downcast, comforts us.
II Corinthians 7:6
Fathers do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.
Why are you downcast O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Have you ever asked yourself the question as the Psalmist asked: “Why am I so downcast and so discouraged?” If so, you are far from alone. Discouragement and depression are probably the most common emotional ailments in our society today. Depression is no respecter of persons. It is experienced by most people at some time or another.
We think of childhood as being a carefree time in life but even children get discouraged and depressed.
Discouragement deprives one of courage, hope and confidence. There are many reasons given for being discouraged. A child can be discouraged when he cannot find good friends, or he or she was not chosen for some role hoped for at school, or because of a grade on a test.
For parent’s discouragement may stem from many sources; things such as a souring relationship, an unhappy job situation, money concerns for the family, just to name a few.
From the moment each of our children were born we were, as parents, committed to teach and train each child to live with a positive attitude. We spent time every day at dinner
to talk as a family and when we noticed any kind of discouragement, we sought to face it immediately. We knew this was a time they most needed to know that Jesus loved them and that we loved them.
We were committed to provide the love, interest and concern for each child as needed. It was important to us as parents to make sure that our children were involved in church, in school, in sports and with their daily "household jobs" because being involved in activities is an important part of a child's life. It helps them learn, to develop relationships, keeps them active and busy and because productive activity bolsters self-confidence.
When discouragement comes your way, look to the Bible for strength and answers to your concerns. God told Joshua to always be strong, have courage, do not be afraid and do not be discouraged for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9) This verse should be read when-ever you become discouraged.
No matter how alone we may feel or how far away from God we may feel, God is always there. He knows our every need and hears our every cry for help.
Do something positive when you begin to feel discouraged. Eliminate negative thoughts in your life. Each day give something, like a kind word, to someone whether it is someone you know or someone you do not know. David said to Solomon, his son: "Be strong and of a good courage."
As parents we need to remind not only ourselves but also our children to be strong in the Lord and not to become discouraged. Our Lord is a God of comfort and hope. When we are downcast, He will comfort us and renew our hope and we will be able to praise Him in spite of our discouragement.
One of the best ways to brighten any day is if you are discouraged to STOP for a few minutes and think about the blessings, the good things, that you have and then thank God for those blessings. It is hard to be discouraged and praise God at the same time. There is no better antidote for discouragement and depression than meditating on God’s goodness.
Our memory verse for this week before Christmas is found in Luke 2:13-14.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly hosts praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, goodwill toward men.
Dear God, thank You that by the reading and meditating on Your Word, we are reminded of Your goodness and Your comfort. Help me not to be discouraged today and be with me as I face each issue knowing that You are my God and You are a good God and that You are with me every moment of the day. Comfort my family, friends and those that need a special touch from You if they are discouraged.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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