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Overcoming the Voice of Discouragement

Ever been in a situation where you hear a voice in your head telling you all the reasons to quit something that you know is good for you?  Maybe you have an ailment that’s bothering you and you’ve had a hard time staying patient with the process of rehabbing.  Maybe you’re unhappy with your fitness or athletic performance and you’ve struggled to stay consistent with exercise and healthy eating.  Maybe you’ve been trying to make some other change to your life and you’re frustrated that it’s taking way longer than expected. Whatever it is, when we try to do something good, this voice often tells us we can’t succeed.

I’ve seen many people overcome by this voice.  It is a very convincing voice because it tends to bring up many good reasons why we should quit.  The voice reminds us of how long we’ve been struggling and gets us to buy into the lie that things will never change no matter what we do.  It tells us that because we had a bad day or a bad week, we are destined to struggle forever.  Have you ever heard this voice?  I know I have.  In fact, I hear it a lot.  So, what should we do when this voice comes around?  First off, keep in mind that we need this voice.  Let me explain why with the parable of exercise.

We all know that exercise is arguably the best “medicine” for our body, but why?  It’s because it provides a resistance that we must overcome.  For example, when you hold a weight in your hand and push it in various directions, the reason it builds strength is because of the resistance it puts against you.  You use your own power to overcome this resistance and in the process, you build strength and have thousands of amazing things happen inside your body.  Although this is very, very good for us, sometimes it really isn’t pleasant.  It can make you feel a “burn” while you’re doing it, it can make you feel exhausted, and it can sometimes leave you sore the next day.  Our shortsighted view might tell us that because of these not so fun things, we should avoid it all together, but doing so will only cause us to get weaker and weaker and weaker.

In the same way, this voice acts as a resistance.  It is trying to push you down, just like that weight in your hand is trying to push you down.  When you push back against that voice and overcome its resistance, it may be very unpleasant, but the end result is that you get stronger in mind and spirit.  This makes you better able to take on the next life challenge.  If you’ve struggled to push back against this voice and gotten weaker as a result, don’t worry, today is a new day and your past does not determine your future.  Keep pushing and you can overcome!  God bless you and I’ll be praying for you!

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