I don’t know about you, but for the past month or so I keep being attacked by waves of discouragement that come over me suddenly. I’ve learned to recognize these times as spiritual warfare, and they usually come at times when God is working (or about to work) and the enemy decides it’s time to amp up the opposition.
This time around, I decided to make a list for myself of ten ways I can encourage myself the next time I start to feel down, and I wanted to share it with you because I’ve found it to be such a helpful tool in fighting discouragement and regaining my focus.
So here’s my list; some of my ideas may seem like no-brainers, but when you’re in the middle of spiritual warfare, it can be difficult to remember or discern what to do or what steps to take. In fact, I became discouraged just this past weekend and remembered that I had created this list, so I checked my list and realized I hadn’t done any of the things on it. When your mind is so wrapped up in your situation and your feelings, it’s hard to think about what you should be doing. That’s why writing it down has been so wonderful because I can refer back to it whenever I need to!
10 Ways I Can Encourage Myself When I Feel Discouraged:
2) Read Scripture.
3) Listen to a sermon.
4) Listen to praise music.
5) Read from my devotional book.
6) Reflect and re-read previous gratitude journal entries.*
7) Ask myself, “What do I need right now?”**
8) Encourage someone else.***
9) Pray for someone else.***
10) Ask a friend or loved one to pray for me.
*This is why I love keeping a gratitude journal! I can look back on all the ways God’s provided and blessed and worked things out in the past when the enemy is trying to deceive me into thinking He’s not working in the present.
**This goes back to the topic of self-care, and the answer to this question will differ each time. Sometimes, when I stop and ask myself this question, the answer is I need a quick nap. Sometimes, I need an extended prayer time. Sometimes, I need to take a walk to clear my head.
***These two are amazing because I’ve found when I take my focus off myself and start focusing on others, my thoughts change and my mood lifts. And each time I encourage someone else, I actually end up encouraging myself, too!
I hope this idea of creating a list for times of discouragement is helpful. I encourage you to create your own list that you can keep and refer back to when those discouraging times come along.
Be encouraged, my friend. God is working - even if you can’t see it right now!
By the way...
This blog post was originally a letter I sent out to my online community. I send out encouraging letters and devotionals like this every week, along with free resources and lots of love and prayers! If this sounds amazing and you’d like to be in on all the goodness, then please join us!
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