“…and He knelt down and prayed… Then an angel appeared to Him from heaven, strengthening Him. And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly… When He rose up from prayer, and had come to His disciples, He found them sleeping from sorrow. Then He said to them, “Why do you sleep? Rise and pray, lest you enter into temptation,” Luke 22.40-46.
Why did the Lord Jesus pray so earnestly right after being in agony? Because He knew that only by the STRENGTH of the Spirit would He overcome that moment. When you seek God in a sincere and intense way, He will strengthen you. The temptation that Jesus refers to here is the discouragement that would enter into the disciples when they saw He was no longer with them. Which is what happened…
Virus no. 5 – DISCOURAGEMENT
Discouragement could be described as an anemic faith. It comes when faith is not fed, when a person is not attentive to his communion with God. He doesn’t meditate on His Word, he is always too tired to pray, too busy to go to church, etc. The devil works at making us busy with many things, which causes us to neglect our spiritual life (Luke 10.40-42). Look at some of the symptoms of anemia:
- Tiredness (you’re tired of fighting, praying, asking, etc.)
- Bad memory (you forget the Promises of God, the miracles you received, etc.)
- Dizziness (a lack of spiritual focus, confusion)
- Muscle pain and weakness (you complain a lot, everything is hard, you’re hypersensitive)
- Low oxygen levels (you want to give up)
The Holy Spirit is the fuel of faith. Faith is the flame that keeps us in the presence of God. If you do not maintain a close relationship with the Holy Spirit, this flame will weaken and may even be extinguished. The Bible says that a fire goes out when there is no wood (Proverbs 26.20).
Don’t wait to “feel” like doing what is needed to maintain a strong faith. Some people start to develop a connection with God, but don’t keep up with the process. E.g. During the Fast of Daniel many abstained from many secular things and dedicated themselves to seeking the Holy Spirit, but when the fast ended, so did the surrender and focus on the Holy Spirit of many. They returned to the same old routines.
Some even stop coming to church because they do not see the results they’re looking for. Many do not know this secret: The fact that you do not see any results at this very moment, does not mean that they are not on their way. “As you do not know what is the way of the wind, or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child, so you do not know the works of God who makes everything.” Ecclesiastes 11.5.
COMMON PHRASES OF THOSE INFECTED BY THIS VIRUS: I prayed and nothing happened. This is hard. All my hard work makes no difference. I’ve tried everything. I don’t want to discourage you, but… If I had only married someone else… If I had only raised my children differently…
Discouraged people always obsess on the past, on what went wrong, on the obstacles and on their weaknesses. Chronic anemia can cause blindness. Discouragement impedes people from seeing what is in front of them and from understanding that anything can change through the power of faith.
Tomorrow, Vaccine #5!!