If you’ve got a dream in your heart (and I believe we all do!) then you understand there are times when the dream feels within inches of your grasp. These are good days—times when you sense its nearness, when you sense God at work, when your faith is strong.
And then it happens.
The thing that makes your heart heavy.
The situation that makes your faith feel as rickety as an antique bicycle.
Like a sudden breeze sweeping dried leaves across the sidewalk, your dream flutters and begins to blow into the yard next door.
Holding on to a dream is hard.
But when our hearts feel heavy, we can encourage ourselves in the Lord. Just like King David did. He endured rough times. Dangerous times. Times that distressed him and made his heart heavy.
David was greatly distressed, for the men spoke of stoning him because the souls of them all were bitterly grieved, each man for his sons and daughters. But David encouraged and strengthened himself in the Lord his God. (1 Samuel 30:6)
I like knowing I’m not the only one who goes through rough times. But what I like even more is the biblical truth that when we feel distressed, when our hearts are heavy, we can encourage ourselves in the Lord.
What does that look like? How, exactly, do we encourage ourselves in the Lord?
We pray in faith, knowing that God is greater than our circumstances. “I know that You can do all things, and that no thought or purpose of Yours can be restrained or thwarted.” (Job 42:2)
We worship—with all our hearts. Worship that is based not on our feelings but on God’s worthiness. “I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.” (Psalm 34:1)
We assure ourselves of His goodness. This is when we declare (out loud, people!) that God is greater than anything else. We say, “God, You are good! You are my Strength and my Song. You a good Heavenly Father!” Then we use Scripture to declare His goodness: “Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty. Everything in the heavens and on earth is Yours, O Lord, and this is Your Kingdom. We adore You as the One who is over all things.” (1 Chronicles 29:11)
We focus on who He is:
He is faithful.
He is trustworthy.
He is powerful.
He is good.
He is able.
He is victorious.
He is mighty.
He is my Redeemer, the Lover of my Soul, the Righteous One, the Prince of Peace, The Lord God Almighty, Faithful and True, Light of the World, Chief Shepherd, Word of Life, the Truth, my Shield, my Refuge, my Defense, my Comforter.
And we trust. We trust that the Lord is at work in spite of how things may appear. We trust that God is able to move in His perfect timing. We trust that as we cooperate with His Holy Spirit, things we change. We trust that as we invite His presence into every detail of our lives, He will move.
Ultimately, when we do the things above, we will honor God, our hearts will be deeply encouraged, and we will hold on to our dreams.
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