Have you ever wondered how Moses handled discouragement? Or how Paul maintained a positive attitude when he faced the criticism and threats of others?
Surely Paul fought with discouragement when he faced the threat of death. However, he kept his focus set on Christ, his source of infinite strength and eternal hope. We can do the same.
Our reward is eternal and kept in heaven for us—the crown of life promised to those who love the Lord.
Life may have many challenges—especially when you are doing what God has given you to do and the world and the devil rise up to hinder you. But you don't have to be overwhelmed by disappointment. We should long to be heroes of the faith—people who seek to win the race set before us and to achieve the goal that God has given.
When trouble comes, don't give up. Don't lose heart, and don't listen to harassment. God has a plan for your life. When you feel like quitting, think about Paul's life and all he did for the Lord. He was not called to be famous or to have a vast sum of money. He was called by God to preach His Word to the lost. Paul did exactly what he was called to do. He obeyed God and surrendered his life to Christ. He went from being a man of position in the Jewish faith to an outcast and traitor. What may have appeared to be failure from a human standpoint was actually the mark of true victory.
God does not ask you to cross a finish line with the goal of reaching worldly success. He does not hand out trophies that look good in a case or sitting on a shelf. Our reward is eternal and kept in heaven for us—the crown of life promised to those who love the Lord, who delight in Him and follow and obey Him because of that delight (see James 1:12; 1 Peter 1:4; John 14:15, 21, 23). Forsaking all else because Christ alone is worthy, will you follow Jesus and proclaim His love and forgiveness to a dying world?
Prayer: Father, help me look to You—my utmost treasure—when I am facing discouragement and disappointment. You are my very great reward, and I know I have nothing to fear because You have overcome the world. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him" (James 1:12).
Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef's sermon The Secrets of Positive Living, Part 14: LISTEN NOW