“… It is enough. Now, Lord, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers.”

— 1 Kings 19:4

Has discouragement dogged your path recently? You’re probably all too familiar with that sick feeling: A friend has let you down or the promotion has fallen through or your car just clutched its chest and died.

Life often seems riddled with letdowns, and if you haven’t experienced such discouragement yet, you’re in for a rude awakening because, sooner or later, discouragement elbows its way into all of our lives. Even spiritual giants such as Elijah experienced discouragement. After the greatest triumph of Elijah’s career—his defeat of the prophets of Baal—he fled for his life. When Jezebel, the Queen of Israel, threatened Elijah’s life for what he had done to the prophets, Elijah cried, “It is enough. Now, Lord, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers.” Elijah was in the pit of despair even though he had just experienced great victory through God’s power.

Whatever discouragement we face, God’s Word tells us that we can have hope. Scripture tells us that whatever comes our way, God will use it for good in our lives. He promises us that He will deliver us from our despair, although we may have to suffer for a while. Why does God allow us to suffer? Because through the fires of our affliction, God consumes our impurities and refines our gold. After all, what is a precious jewel but a piece of earth that has gone through some rather traumatic experiences? God is in the process of creating beautiful gems out of us so that we may adorn His crown.

Life can either wear us down or polish us up. If you feel discouraged today, trust Christ to use your discouraging times to mold you into a precious jewel, a person of great strength and character. Allow those thoughts to comfort you in tough times.

“If you believe God is living, act like it.”
Katherine Luther