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Despair

by on November 2, 2013

I. Despair is the sense of loss of vision, joy, perspective, perception, hope, and the future.

If you have never been in despair you do not want to read this.

If you have been in despair you do not need to read this.

Despair is the lowest feeling a human being can experience.

Joy is gone.

Love is gone.

Hope is gone.

Trust is gone.

Life is gone.

Flavor is gone from food and from life.

Satan has succeeded in convincing you that you are of no value.

  • Nobody cares.
  • Nobody needs me.
  • Nobody wants me.
  • Nobody would miss me if I were not here.
  • The world would be better off without me.
  • I am in the way.
  • I cast a pall on every situation in which I am involved.
  • I am a donkey in a world of beautiful white horses.
  • I am an ugly duckling in a world of beautiful white swans.
  • I am not connected to other people.
  • I am terribly lonely.
  • I am out of sync with life around me.
  • Life feels dark.
  • I withdraw from life.
  • God is silent.
  • I hide.
  • I run away.
  • I give up.
  • It takes all my energy to just live.
  • It takes more energy than I have to just live
  • It takes too much energy to protect myself from unsafe people.
  • I am rejected.

All persons have some of these feelings some of the time.

Persons in despair have most of these feelings most of the time.

Jesus had more reason for despair than any other human being.

  • He was despised and rejected.
  • He had no beauty to make anyone desire Him.
  • He was mistreated by those He created.
  • He was killed by those He created.
  • He died a horrible, cruel death.
  • He was forsaken by His Father God in Heaven.

How could He live and die and live again?

Where did His strength come from?

Who could help Him?

II. How can you help those in despair?

Reach out to those who are depressed and in despair. Come alongside of them. Carefully care for them. See the beauty in their lives. Speak words of hope. They need your love, your touch, your kindness, your reassurance. They need you to believe in them. Write them notes. Smile at them. Pray for them. Be there. Defend them. Fight for their heart. They are worth it.

Slowly they will begin to grow stronger. They will trust your love. They will become healthier people.

If you have never known despair – you probably cannot do this.

If you have known despair – you probably are already doing this.

Jesus knows. Jesus understands. He has been there. He prayed in the Garden. He begged His Father to “Let this cup pass from me.” In the midst of that pain He trusted. He trusted God, His Father. He trusted His Father’s love.

III. If you are in despair. Trust love.

Trust the perfect love of God and trust the imperfect love of people. Be forgiving. Most people do not know that they are hurting you. Realize that this life is a fleeting moment. Eternity is forever.

IV. If you are in despair. Establish boundaries.

Your boundaries have been violated. Find trusted friends who will not violate your boundaries. Then, establish boundaries around your life. Boundaries are not walls. Walls keep people out. Boundaries are for protection and respect and honor. Honor for you and for other people. Boundaries are needed in several areas of life.

V. If you are in despair, consider Jesus.

Jesus, for the joy set before Him endured the cross. There is joy beyond the cross. There is no guarantee of that in this life, except – except that you can know that you know that you know that God loves you. Jesus has endured the pain and rejection before you were here. He did that for you. He loves you that much.

Can you now love other people? Even those who hurt you? Jesus said, “Father forgive them. They do not know what they are doing.” Can you say that?

In Luke 24, Jesus’ disciples were in despair. Life had lost its meaning. Their best friend was gone. Hope was gone. As they walked along, someone joined them. Without even looking up, they engaged the Stranger in conversation. “Haven’t you heard?” they asked incredulously. “Don’t you know what is going on around here?”

Jesus was there all the while. He was there to open their hearts to the Scripture. He is here now. He wants you to open your heart to His Word. He wants to share your pain. He knows. He has been there.

Jesus left this earth. He gave us the Holy Spirit to live in us and guide us and give us strength to live. His Spirit lives in us and we live for Him. With His Word, the Holy Bible and His Spirit we are prepared for life and prepared to overcome the struggles of this life until He comes to take us home. For now, we are faithful.

Are you in despair? Does life seem hopeless? Jesus is here and so are His followers. He and they will minister to you. Open your heart to Him and to them.

Jesus loves you and we do too.

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