The Bible has a lot to say about discouragement, defeat, disappointment, difficulties, delays, doubt and depressions. Frustration is nothing new. Many people deal with frustration in many ways, just to name a few:
Giving up, becoming uninterested or not caring anymore. That is exactly the mind of the enemy of our soul wants us to adopt.
Being Negative, thinking negative when we have biblical grounds for a positive, faith filled expectation. A person’s life is shaped a lot by the way he or she thinks.
Becoming aggressive: Attacking someone or something verbally or physically.
Addiction: Repeating the same non-constructive behaviour over and over again.
Repression: Blocking out the conscious thought of a problem in hoping that the problem will go
Withdrawal: separating oneself from a situation.
In the Book of Ezra 4:4-5, it says: “Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in the building, and hired counsellors against them, to frustrate their purpose, all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia.”
As a people, we have enemies who are doing their utmost to accomplish exactly what the people of the land did in the time of Zerubbabel as he was leading God’s people in building the temple.
They weakened the hands of the people and troubled them
Hired counsellors against them
They were determined to frustrate their purposes
The people of Judah, including Zerubbabel, Jeshua, and the rest of the chiefs of the fathers of Israel knew what it was to feel defeat. The building of the house of God was interrupted by recurring set-backs. It dragged on for 15 years and finally ground to a halt.
It was not until the Lord sent a couple of preachers (Haggai & Zachariah) that the people were encouraged to get up and start again.
Thank the Lord for the preachers and counsellors that he sends into our lives to stir up our spirits and arouse us to a greater and higher faith. We ought to be strong, and work with renewed zeal, for the Lord is with us and will surely give the victory.
Every person knows what it means to feel frustration or defeat in whatever you are trying to accomplish. Discouragement and frustration happens to us all, sometimes on a daily or weekly basis. In the overall plan and program of God for his work and for our individual lives however, ultimate victory is written into the program for those who love God and are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 says: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose.”
Have you ever felt that because of a failure or defeat in life that it was all over? Have you ever felt like your hope for the future had disappeared?
Have you ever felt like your desires and dreams were shattered?
I cannot find too many believers who have not expressed frustration in life but the difference between believers and those who profess faith in Christ is that they can have the peace of God. We cannot have the peace of God until we are first at peace with God but “since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom 5:1).
Most people who have accomplished anything have known frustration
It would be difficult to find a successful businessman or woman, politician, an athlete or a writer who has not at one time known absolute defeat. Many of history’s successes started out small, but grew because someone refused to give up.
Five important points to consider in order to overcome frustration:
Perseverance – Don’t quit, encourage yourself in the Lord and hang in there.
Hard work – Plan your work and work your plan. There is a saying that I read some years ago. “If you keep doing what you have always done then you will always get what you have always got.”
Stay Positive - Things are usually not as bad as they first appear. Sometimes things seem much worse simply because we’re tired or mentally drained. Taking a break and remembering to keep your sense of humour can also help. A positive mind is far more open to solutions and answers than a negative one that thinks it’s just “hopeless” and thinks “what’s the use?” A closed mind will not be able to see the possible solutions when they do come along.
Have faith - Never give into frustration. If something isn’t working out the way you think it should, relax, pray and allow God to intervene before it becomes a stronghold in your life.
Prayer – Where there is much prayer there is much power. Where there is little prayer there is little power. Where there is no prayer there is no power.
Just as defeat came to the nation of Israel, it also came to individuals. The book of Job becomes a very important book indeed to anyone who is walking through a deep dark valley of frustration.
Frustrations? Yes; there will always be some, but we have exceeding great and precious promises; we have a sure word of prophecy (Bible), whereunto we do well if we take heed.
Consider your ways. How much time, effort and expenses do you put in
to whatever you’re trying to achieve. Is God in your plan?
If you will obey and fear the Lord, He will be with you. He will stir your spirit within you to rise up and work. He reminds us today that it is not by might, nor by power, but by his Spirit. Be strong and rejoice in the Lord.
God bless the people of the Cook Islands.
Elder Tai Joseph