Lenten Letters: Discouragement

On this edition of “Becoming Today”, I’ll share my desire to let go of discouragement.

Holding true to my promise to spend the 40-days of Lent by each day dealing with a troublesome issue I’d like to ‘give up’, first let’s come to a mutually understood definition of why I know I need to release it, and the sooner the better!

Oftentimes, we’ll hear from well intentioned individuals platitudes such as “don’t be discouraged”, or “there’s no reason to be discouraged”. However I can currently testify to  the fact that it happens to all of us, for many different reasons.

Looking through some dictionaries we can read that discouragement is defined as:

  • a loss of confidence or enthusiasm; dispiritedness.
  • an attempt to prevent something by showing disapproval or creating difficulties; deterrent.

Okay so far the first entry is more in line with what I’m feeling. Continuing our research:

  • the act of discouraging : the state of being discouraged

Oh how I dislike explanations like that, telling me it’s just another form of a word, doesn’t give me the insight I need.

So let’s search a little further:

  •  is the act of trying to make someone not want to do something.

Hmm… getting closer and of course I have to attest here that it is me that is trying to make me not want to do some things. Battlefield of the Mind rearing its ugliness in my head,… again.

  • the act of making something less likely to happen or of making people less likely to do something
  • a feeling of having lost hope or confidence
  • something (such as a failure or difficulty) that discourages someone

Ahh. Now I think I have the data necessary to come to an informed consent on what it is I am battling. So for the purposes of today’s discussion, let’s agree to accept the following shared understanding:

“Discouragement is a feeling that causes one to embrace an attitude of having lost hope and self confidence. Something that triggers an individual to not want to undertake the process to attempt a specific act, or attempt to fulfill a need.” 

With this knowledge revealed I can now draft my letter to attempt to navigate my path to giving up discouragement and getting on with more worthwhile pursuits.

Dear Lord,

I come to you today, seeking some support. I ask for your insights and wisdom to help me come into agreement on how to let go of this feeling of discouragement that is slowing me, preventing me from fulfilling the deeper desires you have put upon my heart.

We have talked about this before, yet in the frailties of the flesh, I struggle. Embracing my humanness I know I can never be perfect, but I would like to be becoming more enlightened, more able to grow, learn and share.

I’m recalling some reasons you’ve highlighted for me in the past that I can fall prey to discouraging thoughts.

I know it can be a result of a lack of clear vision. Earlier this season I confessed to you my “Clouded Vision” and Your help has been received. So my vision improving, it looks like I need to examine the possibility that this fear rearing its ugly head.

I can see the truth in that. Fear of failure follows another recent behavior I have actively been releasing in “Self Criticism”. I’m working on that and battling against the negative self talk that causes it to cycle in my mind. 

Replacing my “False Beliefs” with your Word, I know I can and I am trusting in you Oh LORD with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding.

Still I am in need of further assistance and guidance. In asking I know I shall receive it as You are always faithful to Your Promises. Thank you. 

All glory, honor and praise are yours. I eagerly await your response.



As I wait in patient endurance for the answers I seek I also am reminded of some other verses that apply to this current tussle I’m having, primarily with myself.

Isaiah 41:10

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Joshua 1:9

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.

Deuteronomy 31:8

The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

I will continue to reflect on these and hope you may find some solace from them as well.

I want to share that I feel confident in saying that I am making progress. My releasing so far has been achieving results. Remember also as I’ve noted throughout this process, your participation is always welcomed, sincerely appreciated and truly desired.

You can share your thoughts and suggestions in the comments section. Which if you’re on the website follows below. Or if you’re a daily subscriber, you can click on the headline at the beginning of the conversation and be taken there.

Also if you’d like to raise questions or share in a less public manner, you can always send a message through our Contact page. 

Think about it. Pray about it. Meditate on it. Consider it and take some time to enjoy yourself. Then decide to join us tomorrow for our next edition of “Becoming Today”.


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