When Lee and I were newly engaged, he deployed to Turkey for four weeks while stationed at Hill AFB, Utah. I was busy with Physical Therapy school in Lubbock, Texas, but during the month of his deployment, I bombarded him with cards and letters. (Sounds archaic, right? Hard to believe there was a time when instant connections over the internet and cell phones weren’t available.)
For his birthday, I sent a package full of cards and gifts. But my most thoughtful gift was spending seven nights watching and cheering for his favorite team, the St. Louis Cardinals, as they competed in the 1985 World Series.
I considered this a real act of love because I grew up in “football country” – I cared little about baseball and understood even less. In my letters, I included newspaper clippings highlighting the competition and the Cardinals eventual loss to the Kansas City Royals.
Lee was completely unaware of my “selfless” acts of love, because as the weeks passed, he received nothing from me – not a word, not one piece of tangible evidence I was even thinking of him. He was starting to question my heart for him. To make matters worse, it was his birthday. What kind of fiancée can’t even remember to send something on his birthday?
In Turkey, the morning mail delivery began. Names were called and Lee’s loneliness was accentuated by the flurry of others opening their mail. Just when it seemed all had been distributed, Lee glanced up to see a very large, unwieldy collection of packages and letters coming toward him.
Every single item I’d sent finally made it into his hands. Best birthday ever!! Even the box full of crumbs that had once been homemade cookies arrived that day.
Lee felt God’s love pour over him, not only confirming His constant presence and care but also affirming His hand in bringing the two of us together.
If you are battling discouragement, not seeing any evidence that God is actively caring for you and pursuing your heart, just remember that God’s lavish love for you is beyond all imaginings.
But be on your guard because your battle is against an unseen enemy. Satan, described as the father of lies, uses our circumstances to lie to us about God’s character and His heart.
One of the most powerful declarations in the Bible is found when Jeremiah, heartbroken by the destruction of Jerusalem and overwhelmed with despair, declares:
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I dare to hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will hope in him.” (Lamentations 3:21-24)
Faith is the choice to believe with unwavering conviction that God’s heart is for you even when there is no visible proof. The most effective weapon we have to debunk the lies and battle discouragement is God’s Word.
I love how Lisa Bevere describes the overcoming power of doing battle with unshakable Truth: God’s Word is a God-Sword!
Lord, I believe that Your heart is for me. I choose to live like the victorious conqueror You tell me I am by grabbing hold of the power of Your Word and battling any discouragement in my heart. May Your Voice speak louder than my doubts and may Your Love wash away all discouragement.