Don't Lose Heart
February 12, 2018 • By Ed Wrather
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. – Galatians 6:9-10 NKJV.
Then I said to them, “You see the distress that we are in, how Jerusalem lies waste, and its gates are burned with fire. Come and let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer be a reproach.” – Nehemiah 2:17 NKJV.
Tanner Broadwell and Nikki Walsh have a dream and that is to sail the seas in their own sailboat. They sold everything they owned, moved to Florida; and bought a 28 ft sailboat, and then spent a year making it ready for the open waters. On their maiden voyage catastrophe struck. Tanner says, “We hit something in about eight or nine feet of water and it stopped the boat completely.”
Whatever they hit, punched a hole in the hull, and the boat began to sink. They quickly gathered all the personal items that they could; from IDs to cash, and of course their Pug, Remy. At the same time, they were calling for help. It took an hour for a ship to arrive, but the water was too shallow for it to reach them. So, they had to swim out to the ship leaving behind their boat. Nikki says, “Everything I've worked for, everything I've owned since I was a child, I brought with me. It's just floating away and there's nothing I can do.” Tanner and Nikki have very little money and no place to live, but still they say they are not giving up on their dream. Nikki says, “Our boat sank, but our dreams didn’t sink with the boat. We can’t just give up on our dreams.” (AJC dot com 02.10.18; Tampa Bay Times 02.11.18; WFTS Tampa Bay 02.09.18)
Whether we are following a dream, building a life, a ministry, or a wall; at times it may look like there is no way forward. How do you keep from losing heart? What do we do when everything collapses around us. We can find some direction from Nehemiah as he faces down opposition to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem.
When it seems, there is no way forward, don’t lose heart, pray! When Nehemiah faced opposition from Sanballat and Tobiah and the army of Samaria, Nehemiah prayed: Hear, O our God, for we are despised… (Nehemiah 4:4a NKJV).”
The next direction we see from Nehemiah is to stay focused: “So we built the wall, and the entire wall was joined together up to half its height, for the people had a mind to work (Nehemiah 4:6 NKJV).” In spite of the threats and taunts from the enemy, Nehemiah and the people of Jerusalem proceeded to build the wall anyway. The temptation when faced with a major setback or opposition is to give up, to stop doing anything for the Lord. When your boat sinks, it is easy to give up. When we encounter opposition to our dreams, when we lose a job, have a personal disaster, or a health issue; it easy to stop serving, stop being faithful in meeting with other believers. It is vitally important to keep on doing what you know God wants you to do.
During these hard times it may be difficult to get out of bed, to even believe it is possible to continue on. We live in a world where bad things sometimes happen to good people; and our boat may sink, or we may have a car wreck, or lose our job, or a sudden health issue, or countless other things that life can bring our way. Instead, we are told by the apostle Paul not to “grow weary” in doing good; because if we continue on, we will reap a harvest. So, keep on doing “good to all.”
So, when life seems to fall in upon you don’t lose heart. Instead, pray! Stay faithful and focused, believing that God will provide a way forward. God will fight for you and will honor your faithfulness just as he did for Nehemiah. In 1 Peter 5:6-7 we are told this, “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” Don’t lose heart! Continue on and God will lift you up at the right time.