We live in a world that is tainted with pain and suffering. Where ever we go there is disappointment from family, friends, coworkers, and so on. Sin entered every aspect of our human experience. Humans in their totality are tainted by sin emotionally, physically, and volitionally (Ephesians 2:1-3). Thus humans will always, as long as we are on this earth, experience pain, suffering, disappointments, discouragements. But how can we as Christians, followers of Jesus Christ, be encouraged in the midst of all that. Here is some practical points:

Encouragement from the Bible

The Scriptures were written for our instruction and encouragement. We should not turn to psychology for our remedy but we should turn to God and seek to know His truth for our sin. Paul in Romans 15:4-5 write to us concerning the Scripture saying, “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus” (ESV). Realize that discouragement is not the heart issue that you are dealing with but you are dealing with other issues in your heart. May be disappointment with God, or high expectation from others. Whatever the issue is allow the Bible to test the motivation of your heart (Hebrews 4:12).

Encouragement from the Cross

Know that what you are going through right now is only a mere shadow of the glory that you will experience if you are a true follower of Christ Jesus. Paul in 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 says, “For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal” (ESV). And know that what you are going through Christ went through. For he experienced every human experience of suffering and pain. In Hebrews 4:14-16 the author of Hebrews write for our encouragement saying, “Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (ESV). So be encouraged Christ Jesus knows what you are going through right now and he is able to sympathize with your weaknesses. Draw to Him for He is our source of life and comfort.

Encouragement from the Brothers and Sisters in your Local Church

Our design the church to be a source of encouragement and a means of grace to the believers. When we say church we are talking about the body of believers that church consist of. Paul in 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too” (ESV). You ought to be involved with other believers sharing with them your suffering and pain and receive encouragement and comfort.

Encouragement from Using the Resources Online

The world-wide web is a blessing in the 21st century. We have a wealth of resources from good and godly preachers, professors, and teachers of the Bible. We ought to be taking advantage of it. Research good preachers and tools online to have good resources that you can go back to in times of discouragement.

Bible Concordance Tools

Bible Gate Way – this website provide for us a tool to search for word in the Bible. You can type the word in the icon and their engine will find Bible verses that match this word. This will help you find some Bible verses that speak about this subject that you are dealing with. Memorize a verse or two that you find to help you meditate on God’s Word.

Hebrew and Greek Concordance – if you wish to study the original languages check strong concordance on this website.

Biblical Sermons: Online

Sermonaudio.com – Wealth of sermons on nearly every topic and every book in the Bible. There is speakers around the spectrum of evangelicals and denominations. My favorite speakers John Whitcomb, David Doran, Bruce Ware, David Jeremiah, John MacArthur, John Piper, Mark Dever, Rick Holland, etc.

OnePlace.com – Another website  and Christian radio that have many sermons online for well known speakers like Mike Fabarez, David Jeremiah, Alister Begg, etc.

Biblicaltraining.org – they have seminars, lectures about different theological topics such as systematic theology, church history, preaching, etc. Great website!

SermonCentral.com – It’s out there. I never actually used it.

Biblical Articles

Bible.org Ministry – great website and they have hundreds of biblical articles by good authors. They also have the theology program where they take you through the main Christian theology categories.