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Rediscover the Bible for Life
“Encouraging Yourself in the Lord”
By Dennis Lee
Ever feel like you’re all alone and no one knows or cares what you’re going through? Maybe you’ve been sick, or in the hospital, and no one came by to encourage you. No one called and you began to feel sorry for yourself and your lot in life.
But before we throw in the towel, or start talking to Wilson the Volleyball, we need to understand that these seasons of life have a purpose and have been designed by God to turn a curse into a blessing
One of God’s promises is that He’ll turn what is evil into good.
Joseph had been his father’s favorite, which had his brothers jealous. To get Joseph out of the way they sold him to Mideonite traders who sold him into slavery in Egypt. But Joseph remained faithful to God and to His word, which soon found him in prison.
In prison Joseph was forgotten. Nobody cared. Nobody was there to encourage. Soon he found himself in charge of two of Pharaoh’s top executives. After successfully foretelling their future, he was let down and again forgotten.
Through a series of disturbing dreams, Pharaoh called for Joseph, and through God’s grace and His God given ability to interpret dreams, Joseph was elevated from forgotten brother, slave, and prisoner, to the second highest ranking official in all of Egypt.
Seven years later famine covered the whole land, including Canaan where Joseph’s family dwelt. Being guided by God, Joseph was able to store away enough food to feed not only Egypt, but also those of other countries. And so Joseph’s brothers, those who sold him and forgot all about him, were now completely dependent upon him.
Joseph brings the whole family to Egypt to care for them. After a few years, Jacob, Joseph’s dad, died and the brothers were worried. But Jacob said, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” (Gen. 50:20 NIV)
Before God rescues us He first has to refine us so we will emerge from these seasons better and not bitter.
No matter what we’re going through, or how discouraged we may be, God is our only true source of encouragement. Only He can turn something bad into something great.
David found this out while running from King Saul.
David and his men were coming back home after narrowly missing a battle where they were expected to fight against their own, the Jews. But God intervened and David was sent home to the town called Ziglag.
Upon their return, David found that the Amalekites had raided taking everything, including their families, and to make matters worse they burned Ziglag to the ground.
David and his men were discouraged beyond measure. They were so overcome with grief that they wept until they could weep no more. And to make matters worse David’s men now talked about executing him.
David, however, didn’t allow grief to rule his life.
“David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.” (1 Sam. 30:6b KJV)
After encouraging himself in the Lord he encouraged his men and they were able to get back what was taken and more.
When you feel isolated and marooned, instead of looking to others, or to Wilson the volleyball, begin to encourage yourself in the Lord.
Wednesday Evening Bible Study