What to do When...Discourage, Worried, and Lonely.

What to Do When...
We feel Discouraged, Worried or Lonely?
Pastor Stephen "Red" Shumate
July 31st, 2016
Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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What to Do When…
You are discouraged, worried or lonely.

We are currently in a series based on the promises of God.  And this week we are looking at some of the promises God that has given us that we can use to help pull us out of the pits of discouragement, worry or loneliness.

We all experience these feeling from time to time, and that’s okay.  Sometimes these lows can help us better appreciate the highs.  However, we do not want to let these feeling consume us nor do we want to stay in these feelings for very long.  So we need to make sure we are leaning on God’s promises to help pull us out of these pits.

1. What to do when you feel discouraged…

I Peter 1:5-7
“You are being protected by God’s power through faith for a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 You rejoice in this, though now for a short time you have had to struggle in various trials 7 so that the genuineness of your faith—more valuable than gold, which perishes though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”

One of the things that discourages us, is the constant struggle of life.  Sometimes it seems like it just will never let up.  It seems there is only so much we can take, and often it may even seem that we are pushed to our limits.  We may even feel like it’s never going to get better.  This scripture, however, tells us that despite what we are experiencing, the promise we have, is that we are being protected by God’s power through our faith during these struggles and that we should rejoice in this.

One thing we want to note here is that it says we are protected by God’s power THROUGH OUR FAITH.  But the only time we really demonstrate our faith is through storms and during trials.  C. S. Lewis once said “Only a real risk tests the reality of a belief.”

Well, that isn’t good news.  The only way for us to really know how great our faith is, is to go through really big storms.  But even though we experience some pretty big storms, here the promise…We are protected by God through our faith in these storms.  Furthermore, it tells us we should rejoice in this.

Why should we rejoice?  Because verses 7 says that our struggles will produce a faith that will result in praise, glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. I other words, our experience of God’s power in the the valley’s will help us appreciate him in the peaks.

This doesn’t make our struggles any easier.

2 Corinthians 4:8-9
We are pressured in every way but not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair; 9 we are persecuted but not abandoned; we are struck down but not destroyed. 

It’s going to be tough.  If we are pressured in every way, it is going to feel like we are going to be crushed!  In fact, this scripture describes just how tough it’s going to be.  But in the end…we will not be destroyed.  It may feel like it…but we won’t be.  Instead, we will come out on the other side a better person.  Here is what Paul says about it.

Philippians 1:6
6 I am sure of this, that He who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

So do not let discouragement get the better of you.  Your struggles are growing your faith, You will survive, and Jesus will complete His works in you.

So, when you feel Discouraged…
Rejoice, knowing He is with you and growing you.

2. What are we to do when we feel worried?
We get worried when things are out of our control…Because if they were in our control we could fix them and if we could fix them, then there would be nothing to worry about.  So it is when things are out of our control and we find ourselves between a rock and hard place, that we tend to worry.  And yet we know that scripture tells us not to worry, because it won’t do any good.

So what promise of God can we lean on to help us not worry?

I Peter 5:6-7
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that He may exalt you at the proper time, 7 casting all your care on Him, because He cares about you.

Cast your care on Him because He cares about you…Our God, who is all powerful and in control of all things, cares about you.  So tell Him what you are worried about then and get some rest.

But what if…what if it all falls apart?  What if what I am worried about actually happens?

So what if it does? What if the worst thing you can possibly imagine happens?  Have you lost your salvation?  No! Does Jesus Still love you?  Yes! Will life still go on?  You bet…

So, instead of worrying about it, cast your cares on Jesus because He loves you!  And then once you do…We must allow His peace control our heart.

Colossians 3:15
And let the peace of the Messiah, to which you were also called in one body, control your hearts. Be thankful.

We must allow His Peace control our heart.  There is that word control again.   This means we must let go of control of part of our heart and turn it over to him.

But if I stop worrying, it means I don’t care…

You couldn’t be more wrong.  Instead it means you care enough to let God have it.  You care enough to let it go out of your control and put it in His. And when we do this…

Philippians 4:19
And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

Do you know how rich God is?
God is so rich that His kingdom has a gate made out of a single pearl…
God is so rich that He has streets that are made of gold…
God is so rich in glory, that there is not one single thing that you need, that would put even the slightest dent in His riches.

And He will supply your needs (not wants) according to His riches in glory.

So when you are Worried…
Give it to him and let His peace control your heart and he will supply your needs

3. What should we do if we are lonely?

I think we all know that God is with us always and that when we feel lonely it is just a feeling.  At least I think we know this in our heads.

Isaiah 41:10
Do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be afraid, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you; I will help you;
I will hold on to you with My righteous right hand.

Isaiah 54:10
Though the mountains move
and the hills shake,
My love will not be removed from you
and My covenant of peace will not be shaken,”
says your compassionate Lord.

So I think in our heads, we know that God is with us but we might not always feel it in our hearts.

Why does this happen?

I’m not sure…
I think it could be for several reason.  Maybe God is there but is trying to grow us, or maybe we have turned our back on Him and walked away.  But no matter how we get to this feeling, here is my advice when we feel lonely.

James 4:8 
Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.

Now, this doesn’t mean, we do things so that he will do stuff for us…For example, we shouldn’t think “My friend is really sick, so I’m going to get serious about church and maybe God will take care of them.” or “Life really stinks, I should probably read my Bible so God will fix it.”

We cannot earn His good graces.  We already have His grace.  So, that’s not what we are talking about here.  Instead we are taking about genuinely drawing closer to Him…like when a child runs to the arms of their parents.  We are talking about grow your relationship with Him.  Of course, you might go to church and read your Bible in the process of getting drawing close to Him, but your motive is different.

You might go to church because you want to be in His presence, or you might start reading the Bible because you want to hear His voice or you might even pray every day because you want to tell Him how your day was…this is drawing close to Him.  And when we draw close to Him, He will draw close to us.  And when He draws close to us, that feeling of loneliness melts away.

So when you feel lonely…
Draw close to Him

So When you are…
1. Discouraged…
Rejoice, knowing he is with you and growing you

2. Worried…
Give it to him and let His peace control your heart

3. So when you feel lonely…
Draw close to Him And He will draw close to you..

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