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What can I do when my feelings go from discouraged to hopeless?

By Dr. Charles Stanley

Habakkuk 3:17-19

If you feel hopeless, helpless, or powerless—unable to deal with people or problems and on the verge of exhaustion—take heart in the prophet Habakkuk’s stirring conclusion to his short book.

Knowing that a savage army of Babylonians would soon plunder his homeland, Habakkuk was discouraged. Surely, the coming destruction would be absolutely unbearable. Yet despite the disheartening scenario, Habakkuk penned an amazing response: “I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. The Lord GOD is my strength, and He has made my feet like hinds’ feet, and makes me walk on my high places” (3:18, 19). Even if the crops all failed, the livestock died, and everything he had learned to depend on was ruined, Habakkuk would still trust the Lord (3:17).

Where did the prophet find such hope in the face of such terrible calamity? For one thing, he had been strengthened by God’s Word. His expression of faith closely echoes the words of David, uttered centuries before: “The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies” (Ps. 18:2, 3).

Also, Habakkuk had spent a great deal of time alone with the Lord. In fact, the book that bears his name is a record of his extended conversation with God concerning His ways and plans. While Habakkuk did not understand (or particularly like) what he heard from God, he acknowledged the fact that His ways are best. He trusted the Lord for the future of Israel and for his own life. Regardless of the circumstances, the prophet knew that the Lord was at work and would bring good out of what seemed to be horrendous circumstances. That is God’s promise to us. He is always at work in our lives to bring good out of the darkest of situations (Rom. 8:28).

When the outlook looks grim, Christ is your strength. When the circumstances seem volatile, Christ is your stability. When the future appears foreboding, Christ remains your hope. The strength of Christ is both inexhaustible and immeasurable—and it is yours to receive.

God delights in upholding the weary and reviving the fainthearted (Is. 40:29–31). Your reservoir of emotional and physical energy may feel nearly drained, but God’s supply of spiritual stamina never runs out. Come to Him and His Word for the strength to carry on, and He will supply the power you need to traverse the rough terrain ahead. That’s His promise, and God always keeps His promises.

Adapted from "The Charles F. Stanley’s Life Principles Bible," 2008.

Copyright 2014 In Touch Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved. www.intouch.org. In Touch grants permission to print for personal use only.

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  • December 27, 2011 06:30 AM

    by

    Thank you! This is exactly what i had to read. it's like i'm feeling an army of worries but i need to ignore my feelings and continue stronger in my faith in God and that is to spend a lot more time in scripture. Thanks again for your awesome God given ministry!

    M. E.
  • November 22, 2011 02:45 PM

    by

    Thank you!
  • October 16, 2011 09:26 PM

    by

    do hope it turns around.
  • October 16, 2011 01:12 PM

    by

    This article will help many people,We are going through some very hard times as families, and as a nation. Thank you Dr. Stanley, for helping people hold on. Sylvia
  • October 11, 2011 03:36 PM

    by

    Thank you
  • October 06, 2011 12:25 AM

    by

    Thanks for makeing it easy for me to read some of God pormises when i needed it. Thank you
  • October 03, 2011 10:19 AM

    by

    Awesome msg for a weary spirit..
  • September 28, 2011 10:40 AM

    by

    This is a wonderful article. Thank You.
  • September 27, 2011 07:34 AM

    by

    Dear,Dr. Stanley , you are trully amaizing all you do I love the (Ps.18:2-3 ) I always admired all you do .
  • August 18, 2011 07:36 PM

    by

    that is jusyu what i needed to hear.
  • August 14, 2011 09:46 PM

    by

    Thank you for uplifting my spiritual life since I was discouraged of my elder in the church ( wife of our pastor)........God is really my strength when circumstances seem volatile, Christ is my stability......God bless you, In everyday of our life together with my husband we seek God and we always follow everything you shared in your intouch ministry. Thank you so much.........
  • August 13, 2011 11:10 AM

    by

    Thank you for leading me to Habakkuk....thank you for teaching God's truth. Thank you for sharing His promises....thank you for giving us hope through the shared promise and truth and power of the inspiration of God's word.
  • August 11, 2011 09:52 AM

    by

    This game me a new outlook on what I'm going through and I know God is what I need to do what needs to be done. In his Holy Name I pray amen.
  • August 06, 2011 09:57 AM

    by

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR TEACHING......BONBON1
  • July 30, 2011 10:21 PM

    by

    Beautiful words in my time of need.
  • July 18, 2011 10:03 AM

    by

    Thank you and God bless you.
  • July 13, 2011 12:30 AM

    by

    Thank you LORD!! God bless you Pastor Stanley!!
  • July 10, 2011 11:19 AM

    by

    my family is walking in the deepest valley of our lives. I need these wonderful messages as they help me so much. Thank you and God bless
  • July 02, 2011 11:43 PM

    by

    very nice!! Awesome!!
  • June 23, 2011 05:35 PM

    by

    I thank the Lord for the very inspiring and encouraging words He has for me through this devotionals of Dr. Stanley. May God bless you more!!!

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