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Joshua 1 verse 9

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Discouraged? A Way Out!

January 7, 2013 — 5 Comments

Discouraged?  Reports of murders, disasters, economic downturns, and other bad news can serve up a plateful of despair.  It’s hard to stay positive in such a negative environment.  But we can’t lose hope.  There are many wonderful things happening all around us.  We just have to open our eyes to the extraordinary.

78628890Whenever I’m discouraged, I ask God to open my eyes to see the good surrounding me.  These are the observations I’ve made in just the past week:

  • A baby laughing.
  • Three 11-year-old boys in the backseat of my car singing at the top of their lungs to the song on the radio.
  • Boys and girls sledding down hills.
  • A stranger helping an elderly woman walk across the icy road.
  • A woman anonymously paying the lunch bill for a couple she didn’t know.  When asked by the waitress why, she merely replied, “Just paying it forward.”
  • An overwhelming response by people with condolences and offers of food and babysitting when a friend announced she unexpectedly lost her grandpa.
  • Reading of a boy who collected almost 3000 books for poor children.
  • Reading of people coming to the aid of others down on their luck with groceries, clothes, and household items.
  • The contented smile of an older gentleman who has learned the benefits of living his priorities and letting go of the little things in life.
  • A mom praying with her dejected teen and seeing the hope and determination return to the teen’s face.
  • Kids building snowmen.
  • A compliment by a stranger and the surprised, gracious smile from the recipient.
  • The celebration of a friend finding a much-needed job.
  • A young girl buying her brother and sister a soda with her own hard-earned money.
  • Listening to a report by African missionaries about needs being met in difficult and desperate places.
  • A family laughing together in a passing car.

There are many wonderful things happening all over the world.  If we learn to look through the lens of Christ, we will discover the good in life.  Better yet, take part in making good news.  Offer a smile to a stranger, play with your kids, donate items to someone in need, volunteer, share dinner with a neighbor, pray with someone.  There are many ways we can participate and bring hope to the world.

Be encouraged rather than discouraged by praying for the eyes needed to observe the wonderful things happening all around you.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”  ~ Romans 15:13

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©2013 Connie Davis Johnson