When we read about the saints, it’s easy to contrast their lives with our own, and to feel sometimes that we’re not quite rising to the occasion. Most saints lived in different worlds, and had different graces suited to their times; but God has called us to live in this world. That’s a good reminder when we’re feeling discouraged! Here are some other ways of coping:
- Offer it all up to God. All that drudgery and discouragement and lack of time, all those events and expectations that are discouraging you? You can make them into a holy thing, an offering of love.
- Let go of thinking you can control things. You can’t; it’s that simple. But thinking we can control our lives will often leave us feeling discouraged. You can’t control events, but what you can control is your response to them. Work on that instead.
- Remember you’re not alone. Nearly every book of the Bible tells a story of someone becoming discouraged… and somehow still making it through. God heard their prayers, and he will hear yours, too.
There’s an old story about the Devil placing his tools—hatred, jealousy, etc.—up for sale, and discouragement was priced the highest. Why? Because it’s one of his most effective tools for getting inside people’s hearts. Listen instead to scripture: “Do not be afraid,” we read in Isaiah, “for I am with you; do not be alarmed, for I am your God.”