Don’t quit. Don’t give up. Don’t stop. Don’t lose heart. We’ve all heard this before (perhaps from a certain long-winded Pastor); usually at the point of exhaustion physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. But how exactly do we accomplish this? How do we keep going, because quite honestly there have been times recently where it has become very difficult to keep going. As always, the answer lies in God’s authoritative word.
Ps. 27:13 gives us a detailed look into the heart of David when he also has reached the point of exhaustion. David says: “I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Lost heart means to faint or grow weary. It’s the same connotation we see elsewhere in Scripture on this same topic of losing heart (Luke 18:1; 2 Cor. 4:1, 16; Gal. 6:9; Heb. 12:3-5; 2 Thess. 3:13). It’s the point where we are ready to throw our hands in the air in frustration and quit or walk away. We’ve lost all hope. We’re tired of the fight; the daily grind. We just want peace, not perfection. We just want the avalanche or onslaught of the weight of this world and it’s seemingly endless problems to disappear. Can you relate to “losing heart”? Boy I sure can. But David says he would have lost heart, “…unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.“
What David is saying here has to do with his focus; his perspective. He doesn’t try to pretend there’s nothing wrong or ignore the problems. He simply says he stayed focused/he believed that he had something better to look forward to. He wholeheartedly believed that God would intervene in his life; that he would experience God’s goodness and presence; that his Lord would remain faithful here on this earth, but also in the life to come. He had a solid belief that this world wasn’t his home. He realized his hope was in the Lord of eternity, Jehovah, not in the difficult circumstances that surrounded him. He understood that one day the turmoil and chaos of this world would be exchanged for perfect peace (Shalom, Shalom – Is. 26:3) in the presence of His God.
And v.14 reveals the details of how this focus is accomplished: “Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord.” 1.) Wait on the Lord. Be patient, even in the midst of troubles. Wait patiently and silently (Ps. 40:1; 61:1-4; 62:1-2, 5-8.) 2.) Be of good courage. We tend to be overwhelmed by this life and that breeds fear, but perfect love (the Love of God) drives fear away & out of our heart (1 John 4:18). When we wait on the Lord, that produces confidence and courage because we realize God is in control. When we surrender everything to Him, we have the confidence to know the outcome of our circumstances, no matter how dire, are under the authority of Almighty God. Patience and courage go hand in hand when depending upon the One, true, sovereign God. 3.) When we wait on the Lord, that produces the courage of the Lord, which then gives us strength. When we’re quietly waiting we don’t run ourselves ragged with worry and anxiety. We have strength because we’re still. And it’s an inner strength that He gives; the strength of the heart. 4.) Another reminder to wait. A double emphasis. Why? Because it’s something we all struggle with. We’re impatient people. We want immediate answers and results. But rest assured, even when we don’t see God working according to our expectations and perspectives, that doesn’t mean He isn’t working.
Keep an eternal perspective. Wait. Be courageous. Stay strong. Don’t lose heart.