Spiritual Causes of Discouragement

  • July 15, 2017
Saturday 15

Psalm 43

It’s often easy to trace discouragement back to its apparent cause, such as a criticism at work or a relationship issue. But there can be subtle, less obvious factors that are valuable to understand. So let’s look at some spiritual components.

Satan. The enemy is a primary instigator. His purpose is to have us lose heart, think poorly of ourselves, and focus only on the negative.

An area of weakness. When the devil has a stronghold in our life, such as a tenacious habit, he can use it to discourage us. This can be especially disheartening because it feels as if we can’t escape his grip, no matter what we do.

Unanswered prayer. When a prayer is answered “no” or “not now,” we can lose hope. Sadly, some people quit praying altogether.

Prayerlessness. Failing to understand God’s sovereignty and timing can lead to this tragic result. When He answers prayer in an unexpected way, some believers are so taken aback or irritated that they give up on praying altogether. However, cutting off communication with the Lord is a sure way to move into deeper discouragement.

The sense you can’t please God. This is a tragic consequence of a works-based faith, wherein we believe God’s favor is tied to our good works. What a misguided error! Our Father’s love is based on His own grace, not our deeds.

It can be surprising to realize spiritual factors may be adding to our discouragement and further draining our joy and energy. Identifying these causes is crucial, even if the process is painful. Once we clearly see the problems, we can begin to learn how to avoid or correct these trouble areas.

Bible in One Year: Proverbs 26-28

Other Daily Content

What happens to my notes

1 Vindicate me, O God, and plead my case against an ungodly nation; O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man!

2 For You are the God of my strength; why have You rejected me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

3 O send out Your light and Your truth, let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill And to Your dwelling places.

4 Then I will go to the altar of God, To God my exceeding joy; And upon the lyre I shall praise You, O God, my God.

5 Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.

1 Like snow in summer and like rain in harvest, So honor is not fitting for a fool.

2 Like a sparrow in its flitting, like a swallow in its flying, So a curse without cause does not alight.

3 A whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey, And a rod for the back of fools.

4 Do not answer a fool according to his folly, Or you will also be like him.

5 Answer a fool as his folly deserves, That he not be wise in his own eyes.

6 He cuts off his own feet and drinks violence Who sends a message by the hand of a fool.

7 Like the legs which are useless to the lame, So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

8 Like one who binds a stone in a sling, So is he who gives honor to a fool.

9 Like a thorn which falls into the hand of a drunkard, So is a proverb in the mouth of fools.

10 Like an archer who wounds everyone, So is he who hires a fool or who hires those who pass by.

11 Like a dog that returns to its vomit Is a fool who repeats his folly.

12 Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

13 The sluggard says, There is a lion in the road! A lion is in the open square!"

14 As the door turns on its hinges, So does the sluggard on his bed.

15 The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again.

16 The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes Than seven men who can give a discreet answer.

17 Like one who takes a dog by the ears Is he who passes by and meddles with strife not belonging to him.

18 Like a madman who throws Firebrands, arrows and death,

19 So is the man who deceives his neighbor, And says, Was I not joking?"

20 For lack of wood the fire goes out, And where there is no whisperer, contention quiets down.

21 Like charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, So is a contentious man to kindle strife.

22 The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels, And they go down into the innermost parts of the body.

23 Like an earthen vessel overlaid with silver dross Are burning lips and a wicked heart.

24 He who hates disguises it with his lips, But he lays up deceit in his heart.

25 When he speaks graciously, do not believe him, For there are seven abominations in his heart.

26 Though his hatred covers itself with guile, His wickedness will be revealed before the assembly.

27 He who digs a pit will fall into it, And he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him.

28 A lying tongue hates those it crushes, And a flattering mouth works ruin.

1 Do not boast about tomorrow, For you do not know what a day may bring forth.

2 Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; A stranger, and not your own lips.

3 A stone is heavy and the sand weighty, But the provocation of a fool is heavier than both of them.

4 Wrath is fierce and anger is a flood, But who can stand before jealousy?

5 Better is open rebuke Than love that is concealed.

6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.

7 A sated man loathes honey, But to a famished man any bitter thing is sweet.

8 Like a bird that wanders from her nest, So is a man who wanders from his home.

9 Oil and perfume make the heart glad, So a man's counsel is sweet to his friend.

10 Do not forsake your own friend or your father's friend, And do not go to your brother's house in the day of your calamity; Better is a neighbor who is near than a brother far away.

11 Be wise, my son, and make my heart glad, That I may reply to him who reproaches me.

12 A prudent man sees evil and hides himself, The naive proceed and pay the penalty.

13 Take his garment when he becomes surety for a stranger; And for an adulterous woman hold him in pledge.

14 He who blesses his friend with a loud voice early in the morning, It will be reckoned a curse to him.

15 A constant dripping on a day of steady rain And a contentious woman are alike;

16 He who would restrain her restrains the wind, And grasps oil with his right hand.

17 Iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens another.

18 He who tends the fig tree will eat its fruit, And he who cares for his master will be honored.

19 As in water face reflects face, So the heart of man reflects man.

20 Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied, Nor are the eyes of man ever satisfied.

21 The crucible is for silver and the furnace for gold, And each is tested by the praise accorded him.

22 Though you pound a fool in a mortar with a pestle along with crushed grain, Yet his foolishness will not depart from him.

23 Know well the condition of your flocks, And pay attention to your herds;

24 For riches are not forever, Nor does a crown endure to all generations.

25 When the grass disappears, the new growth is seen, And the herbs of the mountains are gathered in,

26 The lambs will be for your clothing, And the goats will bring the price of a field,

27 And there will be goats' milk enough for your food, For the food of your household, And sustenance for your maidens.

1 The wicked flee when no one is pursuing, But the righteous are bold as a lion.

2 By the transgression of a land many are its princes, But by a man of understanding and knowledge, so it endures.

3 A poor man who oppresses the lowly Is like a driving rain which leaves no food.

4 Those who forsake the law praise the wicked, But those who keep the law strive with them.

5 Evil men do not understand justice, But those who seek the LORD understand all things.

6 Better is the poor who walks in his integrity Than he who is crooked though he be rich.

7 He who keeps the law is a discerning son, But he who is a companion of gluttons humiliates his father.

8 He who increases his wealth by interest and usury Gathers it for him who is gracious to the poor.

9 He who turns away his ear from listening to the law, Even his prayer is an abomination.

10 He who leads the upright astray in an evil way Will himself fall into his own pit, But the blameless will inherit good.

11 The rich man is wise in his own eyes, But the poor who has understanding sees through him.

12 When the righteous triumph, there is great glory, But when the wicked rise, men hide themselves.

13 He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, But he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion.

14 How blessed is the man who fears always, But he who hardens his heart will fall into calamity.

15 Like a roaring lion and a rushing bear Is a wicked ruler over a poor people.

16 A leader who is a great oppressor lacks understanding, But he who hates unjust gain will prolong his days.

17 A man who is laden with the guilt of human blood Will be a fugitive until death; let no one support him.

18 He who walks blamelessly will be delivered, But he who is crooked will fall all at once.

19 He who tills his land will have plenty of food, But he who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty.

20 A faithful man will abound with blessings, But he who makes haste to be rich will not go unpunished.

21 To show partiality is not good, Because for a piece of bread a man will transgress.

22 A man with an evil eye hastens after wealth And does not know that want will come upon him.

23 He who rebukes a man will afterward find more favor Than he who flatters with the tongue.

24 He who robs his father or his mother And says, It is not a transgression," Is the companion of a man who destroys.

25 An arrogant man stirs up strife, But he who trusts in the LORD will prosper.

26 He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, But he who walks wisely will be delivered.

27 He who gives to the poor will never want, But he who shuts his eyes will have many curses.

28 When the wicked rise, men hide themselves; But when they perish, the righteous increase.

Background Color:
Light
Aa
Dark
Aa
Font size:
A
A
A
loader
Publish Date July 21, 2017
Courage in the Lonely Hour

It is in the midst of loneliness that we learn to rely exclusively on God.

Read Now
Daily devotion not found for this date
Devotion archive not available for dates in the future