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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Encouraging Yourself

David, the boy who took down Goliath, the man after God's own heart, the great king, knew discouragement. “My strength is dried up like a potsherd,” he cried, “and sticks to the roof of my mouth” (Psalm 22:15a). David developed a valuable trait. When there was no one to build his strength, David encouraged himself in the Lord. “You hear, O Lord,” he declared, “ the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more" (Psalm 10:17-18). As Saul sought to kill him, David was alone and hiding in fear. It was in this time of suffering that David learned to encourage himself. Work on developing this valuable trait, and you will discover that fear will not rule your life, and your faith in God's protection will flourish.

David had faith that God would give him the strength he needed for whatever he faced. “But you, O Lord, be not
far off; O my Strength, come quickly to help me” (Psalm 22:19). David discovered that sharing with others what God had done, not only encouraged others, but helped him. "I will declare your name to my brothers,” he promised. “In the congregation I will praise you” (Psalm 22:22). Praising God increased David’s belief in God’s promises and provision.

Encourage others, even when you least feel like it. “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise--the fruit of lips that confess his name” (Hebrews 13:15). It is only because of Jesus’ sacrifice that you can offer a sacrifice of personal praise. Take the opportunity today to give the Lord a sacrifice of praise. Share His joy when you feel sad. Share His faithfulness when you feel deserted. It is not about feelings. It is about God's truth no matter how you feel. The Lord will honor your surrender by encouraging you!

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