Often, when I’m disheartened, I return to Isaiah 41. It’s a chapter of God speaking to his people. Here’s a snippet:
Don’t fear, because I am with you;
don’t be afraid, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
I will surely help you;
I will hold you
with my righteous strong hand. Isaiah 41:10, CEB
I get discouraged when I see people give up on community. In other words, I get discouraged when I see people kind of stall in their faith journey or recovery or whatever you want to call it. I don’t mean it in a judgmental way. I don’t look down on them. It just makes me sad. It’s a really hard thing to stick with over time. One of the best parts of my life is showing up on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesday nights, Wednesday nights, and sometimes Thursday nights and standing around and chatting and catching up with everyone who has shown up for whatever event we’re having. Some people are doing well and are in good moods, and others not so much. But either way, it’s great to simply stand around, listen to each other, and spend time together. I’m sad when I no longer get to have that experience with someone. Basically, when we no longer know each other. There are a variety of forms of loss in life and some are more obvious than others (death or divorce, for instance). Sometimes we forget about the tough losses of friendship.
That brings me down. Granted, I have a lot of great people in my life. I’m really, really lucky to have much love and support. But every loss is hard and sad. In these times, I use these verses (amongst other things, of course) and ones like them as gentle reminders of the things I have in life, both large and small.
What disheartens you? How do you typically deal with that?