How to pray when you’re feeling discouraged

Let this 3-word prayer restore a reality grounded in truth if you're feeling discouraged. Overcoming discouragement with Faith-filled hope, Biblical encouragement, inspirational quotes, Scripture truth, and prayer for strength

Are you feeling discouraged? Let this 3-word prayer restore a reality grounded in truth. Discouragement is holds you hostage with deception and confusion. Break free!

I open my messages and there’s another request.

One more weary traveler journeying with confusion and held ransom by discouragement.

I drop my head and my face wrinkles as the burn works its way up to my eyes.
Each time I hear of these stories, my own struggle against this beast awakens.

I don’t know how to pray anymore, Lord.

For them. For me.
How do we battle this invisible monster that hisses and whispers from the shadows?
Most of us aren’t even sure where it’s coming from. It doesn’t make sense.

Why does fear continue to collide with our faith?

Why does it feel like our feet are covered in clay and what you’ve called us to accomplish is fit for an army, not a single warrior?

I struggle for the words.

I can’t sit still on this newest request and I rise from my chair to pace as I petition, clutching my coffee cup as it collects my tears.
I look out across the field that is my front yard, as if I expect an answer to rise above the trees or come racing up the long gravel drive.

At that moment, truth that has been brewing begins to swell from the depths of my own weary soul.

It percolates its way up to my heart and together they turn the key in my mind, unlocking an Old Testament story I’ve been pondering for a while.

The Spirit whispers, “Pray this.
So I do.
A three-word prayer forms on my lips:

Open their eyes.

Open my eyes.

Let this 3-word prayer restore a reality grounded in truth if you're feeling discouraged. Overcoming discouragement with Faith-filled hope, Biblical encouragement, inspirational quotes, Scripture truth, and prayer for strength

{Yes} How a prophet prayed for the discouraged.

Open his eyes.

These are the words of Elisha the prophet found in 2 Kings 6.

Elisha supplied the king of Israel inside intel on his enemy, the king of Syria. As you might expect, this marked Elisha as “most wanted” by the Syrian king.

One night Syrian forces, horses, and chariots surrounded the city where Elisha and his servant were stationed.

When the servant rose early the next morning, he could see the enemy in full force encircled around the city.
Distraught, he asked Elisha what they should do.

Scripture records Elisha’s response:

“ ‘Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.’
Then Elisha prayed and said,
‘O LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.’
And the LORD opened the servant’s eyes and he saw;
and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.”

(2 Kings 6:16-17, NASB)

Enlightened, the servant observed the unseen world of God’s heavenly armies, waiting to do battle with the enemy.

The Syrians had stationed horses and chariots around the city, but the Lord had FILLED the mountains behind them with horses and chariots of FIRE.

{No} What the prophet DIDN’T pray

Did you notice that Elisha DIDN’T ask God to rescue them?

He asked for his servant to understand the reality of the deliverance already in process.
The young man could only see the enemy’s activity in front of himAnd although the enemy was real, that was only a partial reality.

Discouragement is a well-crafted tool of the enemy.

His factories producing this fiery dart are always working overtime, racking up a host of OSHA violations I’m sure.

If he can’t convince you to withdraw,
he’ll work to curtail your passion to withstand.

  • Sometimes the dart lands and causes you to question your calling.
  • Other times you may feel hopeless or simply overwhelmed.
  • Doubts rise, feelings of failure set in, and you wonder if you were just fooling yourself thinking you could make a difference.

And if discouragement moves in, it will not hesitate to invite its stronger cousins despair and depression to join the party.

I think the enemy loves this weapon because it’s fueled by half-truths.

But half-truth = whole lie.
And discouragement — at its very core — is deception.
Smoke and mirrors.
Dirty glass.

It projects an outlook that you’re outnumbered and proclaims your efforts as stalled while others’ strides seem effortless.
It rushes in when the winds rage and the breakers swell and you take your eyes off the Savior to stare at the storm.

It’s a half-truth because there’s a real war, hurricanes of life are common, and your knowledge and abilities are finite.

The answer is not to pretend the battle isn’t raging,
ignore the storm,
or assume you should be able to “just handle it.”

That would also be a deception.


Elisha’s servant didn’t need
his battle minimized;
he needed his God maximized.

He needed his eyes opened and his heart strengthened
with confidence in the Lord of Hosts.

The same is true for you.
And for me.

Are you feeling discouraged? Read more about how Elisha prayed for his servant, who needed his eyes opened and his heart strengthened with confidence in the Lord of Hosts. Overwhelmed warriors don't need their battle minimized; they need their God maximized. The same is true for you.

The Full Truth + How to pray if you’re feeling discouraged

And so, in a quest for the FULL truth, I have two things to say to you, dear reader who’s feeling discouraged … and to you, discouraged heart of my own:

Truth 1: The Calling is Big

This is hard.

If you are taking a stand or attempting to advance anything for the kingdom of God, you will meet resistance.
Count on it.

Whether it’s in your parenting, your marriage, your witness as an employee or employer, your friendships, or anything else that might give you a micro-platform to speak truth … well, it will come under attack.

And furthermore.
Your own flesh wages war against your spirit and the enemy will always side with your flesh, inflaming faulty thinking, wrong passions, and skewed motives.

If it feels like you are always in a battle,
it’s because you are.
If it feels like you are imperfect,
it’s because you are.
If it feels like the assignment is more than you can handle,
it’s because it is.

You weren’t made to do this alone.

Your heart is deceitful.

It will beat with thoughts of how this is too big and you are too small — useless even.

Your heart must be discipled.

Every day it needs a fresh supply of truth coursing through your veins.
Life-sustaining.
Soul-refreshing.
Mind-renewing.
Eye-opening TRUTH.

So here’s the REST of the story …

Truth 2:  The Caller is Bigger

The one who called you is great.

In fact, he is GREATER.

And notice. He DID call.
You have been enlisted and your stance beside your fellow warriors matters.
It matters for the kingdom.

You have been given an assignment.

Carry out your orders, but leave the responsibility for the results to the commander.
Because you are in HIS army, you come under HIS protection.

And dear believer, you are equipped.

His Spirit lives within you. His wisdom is enough and he gives it generously.
He is the supplier of your weapons and the keeper of your peace.

He takes responsibility for you and yours.

His hope holds the power to break your fog and clean the looking glass of your heart.
And in his everlasting arms you are held.

You are not alone.

Discouragement doesn’t get the final word.
Despair cannot hold you for ransom. ¹
Defeat is not an option.

And so.
I pray.
For you and For me.

A Prayer: Open our Eyes

Oh, Lord of Hosts ~

OPEN OUR EYES.

Open our eyes to the reality of your power.

Focus our minds on your wisdom and understanding.
Show us how to give more of ourselves
over to your Spirit to take hold and transplant hope.

Where there is despair, wash it with your glory.
Where we see our failed efforts, replace them with reminders that you never fail.

When we feel like we can’t go on,
shelter us under your wing and refuel us to walk in faith.
And when we think we are defeated,
turn our thoughts to the cross where you defeated sin and death.

Open our eyes to look beyond the enemy
and see the mountains FULL of your FORCES on FIRE.

OPEN OUR EYES.


“… having the eyes of your hearts enlightened,
that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you …”
(Eph. 1:18)

“I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,
who made heaven and earth.”
(Ps. 121:1-2)

Jumpstart Prayer Challenge

If you could use help restarting your prayer life,
I’ve developed a free 5-day prayer challenge that will guide you in that.

Click for Info on the 5-day Prayer Challenge

 

Discouraged #Christians don't need their battle MINIMIZED. They need their God MAXIMIZED!Click To Tweet

¹ Inspiration for this phrase comes from this praise song that is on a perpetual loop on my own Spotify playlist: “Shoulders” by King & Country


Keep Reading: More Posts Like This Survival grade faith when facing challenges in life

Combat feelings of discouragement and brokenness with survival-grade faith.

.

Christi

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29 Comments on “How to pray when you’re feeling discouraged”

  1. Lord, open our eyes to see the caller is greater. Love your encouragement and the scripture verses you have included. Wow, they make us realize what we’re missing when we’re looking at our discouragement instead of his encouragement.

  2. Thank you for the encouragement! If could only see what God sees, our perspective would radically change–but the realm of faith lies in opening our eyes to the bigness of God and letting him worry about the details.

You have something worth saying!