I need to encourage myself in the Lord this evening so I thought I would write it down just in case it encourages your faith too. This will mostly be scripture – what else can encourage you like the Words of the Living God?
And David was greatly distressed … but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God. (1 Samuel 30:6)
The voice of faith and the voice of doubt constantly vie for dominance in our heart and mind. Well, at least in my heart and mind.
Over the last several years I have had the opportunity to frequently doubt what my spirit knows to be true because my eyes and my brain have reminded me of what they see and know. Many people throughout the world have experienced unfavorable changes in their finances over the last few years due to a global recession brought about by the real estate collapse and subsequent foreclosure crisis in the U.S. There have been high unemployment rates and the business climate has been challenging to say the least.
Tax day (April 15th) is just around the corner and I know that my household income was about 45% lower in 2010 than it was in 2009. My family has gone through some definite cutbacks, spent more time at home and yet every need has been met. Even with less than we are used to we have found that we are still blessed. We are blessed because we have Jesus and blessed because we have each other.
We have been faithful to tithe and give offering above the tithe during this time; knowing that God will honor His word, regardless of what we see and hear. There have been 11th hour moments where it has been difficult to hold on and yet we still have the testimony of victory. God is faithful to His promises.
When your need is financial and you have been faithful to give as directed by Scripture and the voice of the Holy Spirit you have to stand on the promises that God has made to us in His Word. Here are several of the promises that I use to encourage myself in the Lord.
Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:7-9)
Not a single one of all the good promises the Lord had given to the family of Israel was left unfulfilled; everything he had spoken came true. (Joshua 21:45)
There was always enough flour and olive oil left in the containers, just as the Lord had promised through Elijah. (1 Kings 17:16)
The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. (Psalm 23:1)
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth! He will not let you stumble; the one who watches over you will not slumber. (Psalm 121:2-3)
Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with good wine. (Proverbs 3:9-10)
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)
I will be your God throughout your lifetime— until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you. (Isaiah 46:4)
Bring all the tithes (the whole tenth of your income) into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and prove Me now by it, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer [insects and plagues] for your sakes and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground, neither shall your vine drop its fruit before the time in the field, says the Lord of hosts. And all nations shall call you happy and blessed, for you shall be a land of delight, says the Lord of hosts. (Malachi 3:10-12 AMP)
That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?
So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. (Matthew 6:25-33)
Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back. (Luke 6:38)
And my God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19 AMP)
Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. (1 Peter 5:7)
I know that is a lot of scripture – but these are the words of our Heavenly Father’s promises. He has spoken frequently in both Old and New Testaments about meeting the needs of His children.
God has not forgotten about you. God is not going to violate His word for you or for me. If we will trust and obey and then stand and believe we will experience the salvation of the Lord.
It is our faith in Him that allows us to experience His faithfulness to His word. So, if you are downcast in doubt because your need is larger than what you can handle; surrender that need to your Father in heaven.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, (Ephesians 3:20)
Eventually we all face circumstances that we cannot see a way out of. We all have our moments when our strength, wisdom, wealth and influence are incapable of providing what we need. When we face these moments are we lifted up because we know Him through whom all things are possible or do we hang our heads in premeditated defeat?
So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. (Hebrews 10:35)
We can discard our faith and give up or we can direct our faith to Jesus and be lifted up.
Be encouraged in the Lord my friends.