therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. [2 cor 4:1]
there are a lot of reasons we might lose heart, why we would get discouraged, things that would make it seem like our work is fruitless, our future is hopeless, and our joy is long gone. lack of progress in ministering to your neighbors, persecution as you share the gospel in your workplace, division in your family because of your boldness for Christ, continued bondage to sin in the person you are discipling – are the many things that can cause us to lose heart.
but, scripture gives us many reasons to not just lose heart, but to take heart! it is not just a command, it is a command built on inherent truths. below are some passages where scripture tell us to take heart. i encourage you today, especially if you are wrestling with the reality of losing heart, of discouragement, to read the verses and meditate on them in the presence of the Lord. ask him to make these truths real to you. turn to these passages in full context and see the story that surrounds them, and let the presence of the Lord minster to you and encourage you today.
and behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. and when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.” [matthew 9:2]
Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” and instantly the woman was made well. [matthew 9:22]
but immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “take heart; it is i. do not be afraid.” [matthew 14:27]
and Jesus stopped and said, “call him.” and they called the blind man, saying to him, “take heart. get up; he is calling you.” [mark 10:49]
i have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. in the world you will have tribulation. but take heart; i have overcome the world.” [john 16:33]
~ keith kozlowski