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Summary: Where seldom is heard a discouraging word! How is it around your home? We all face difficult times. Discouragement is almost universal in a war zone. Is there anything we can do about it?

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14, November 2004

Dakota Community Church

Home, Home on the Range

Introduction:

Where seldom is heard a discouraging word! How is it around your home?

We all face difficult times. Discouragement is almost universal in a war zone.

Is there anything we can do about it?

Do we just need to suffer and tough it out?

What does the Bible say about it?

Hebrews 10: 32-35

32Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering. 33Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated. 34You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions.

35So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. 36You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.

1. Hold on to faith and confidence.

Did you get that?

Hebrews 10: 35

35So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. 36You need to persevere

Romans 4: 19-20

19Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead--since he was about a hundred years old--and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. 20Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God

Luke 8: 49-50

49While Jesus was still speaking, someone came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. "Your daughter is dead," he said. "Don’t bother the teacher any more."

50Hearing this, Jesus said to Jairus, "Don’t be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed."

Matthew 14: 20

30Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, "Lord, save me!"

The word of God tells us not to lose our confidence which has great reward.

Our spiritual victory depends on our faith.

Peter walked on the water as long as he looked to Jesus and had faith in him. But he began to drown as soon as he lost his faith.

He was filled with fear because he started looking at the storm and the waves. In our own lives we can walk in victory as long as we are firm in our faith in God’s goodness and faithfulness. But we will drown in our problems and difficulties if we lose our faith and begin to doubt and fear.

Illustration:

An elderly lady was once asked by a young man who had grown weary in the fight, whether he ought to give up the struggle. "I am beaten every time," he said dolefully. "I feel I must give up." "Did you ever notice," she replied, smiling into the troubled face before her, "that when the Lord told the discouraged fishermen to cast their nets again, it was right in the same old spot where they had been fishing all night and had caught nothing?"

2. Continuing doing good works.

Galatians 6: 9

9Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Acts 10: 1-5

1At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion in what was known as the Italian Regiment. 2He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly. 3One day at about three in the afternoon he had a vision. He distinctly saw an angel of God, who came to him and said, "Cornelius!"

4Cornelius stared at him in fear. "What is it, Lord?" he asked.

5The angel answered, "Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God.

Daniel 10: 12-14

"Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. 13 But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia.

Matthew 14: 13-14

13When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. 14When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.

Does anyone know what event preceded this in Jesus’ life? His cousin John was beheaded!

The word of tells us not to become weary in doing good for in due time we shall reap our reward. Sometimes difficulties and trials make us feel like quitting.

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