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Today’s Truth

GOD addressed Samuel: “So, how long are you going to mope over Saul…Fill your flask with anointing oil and get going.

1 Samuel 16:1

Friend to Friend

Have you ever been so discouraged that you just wanted to stay in bed and pull the covers up over your head? Maybe that’s where you are right now.

I’ve hidden under the covers a time or two myself. OK, well maybe more than two.

So how do we venture out? How do we get over the discouragement and get going again?

There’s a story in the Bible that helps me when I feel mopey. (You don’t mind if I get in the Bible a little do you? I didn’t think so.)

A few years after the Israelites made it to the Promised Land, they grew tired of being ruled by God through the prophets. They wanted to have a king like all the other nations.

Samuel was the ruling prophet at the time, and he told the people all the reasons having a king was a bad idea. They persisted in their demands, and eventually God allowed them to choose a king. “They are not rejecting you,” God assured Samuel. “They are rejecting Me.”

The people picked a man named Saul because he was tall, dark, and handsome. I’m not kidding. It’s right there in black and white. Saul reluctantly accepted the kingship, was anointed by the Holy Spirit, and totally depended on God for his new position.

But after a while, Saul decided being a king wasn’t so hard after all. He disobeyed and dishonored God by taking matters into his own hands. (Never a good idea, I might add). As a result, God snatched away Saul’s kingship and removed his anointing.

Samuel was so discouraged over Saul’s failure; he went to bed and pulled the covers up over his head. He was disappointed in Saul, and felt sorry for himself.

Now this is important. If I were sitting right there with you, I’d stand up in a chair and read this out loud. Here we go. One day God said, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel” (1 Samuel 16:1 NIV).

I love Eugene Peterson’s paraphrase: “So, how long are you going to mope over Saul?” (MSG)

Mope? Yep. That’s a good word.

God asks you and me the same question: How long will you mope because life hasn’t turned out like you thought it would. How long?

I don’t mean to make little of any of the painful or discouraging situations in your life. I’ve had them too. When my child died before she was born, I wasn’t sure I’d ever get out of bed again. Didn’t really want to.

But here’s what I know today: No matter how painful or discouraging the circumstances of life may be, God never intends for you to get stuck there. You should never put a period where God puts a comma.

There’s always more of your story to be written. When you loosen the string holding the binding of your book tightly shut, and give God a free hand to continue the narrative of your life, things which the eye has not seen and the ear have not heard and have not entered the mind of man will be yours.

God goes on to say to Samuel: “Fill your horn with oil and be on your way; I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I have chosen one of his sons to be king” (1 Samuel 16:1, emphasis added).

At some point in our moping about, God comes to us and says, “Enough already. Get up. Get going. Be on your way. I’ve got something for you to do. Your life is not over. The story has more chapters to be written. Let go of your discouragement and take hold of the next adventure I have planned for you.”

The question is: What will you say?

Samuel was terrified, but God assured him: I will show you what to do. You are to anoint for me the one I indicate” (1 Samuel 16:2–3, emphasis added).

I will show you what to do. And that’s all God expects of me and of you—take the first step of obedience. Get up and get going. He will take care of the rest.

I love the next sentence in the story: “Samuel did what God told him” (1 Samuel 16:4).

Ah, the key to experiencing the adventurous life of a thriving faith . . . the faith you always longed for.

So what about you? Are you ready to get up and get going?

Let’s Pray

Lord, I’ll admit. Sometimes I mope. When things don’t turn out like I want them to, I put on my long face, slump my shoulders, and drag my feet. Nobody wants to be around me when I’m like that. I don’t even like to be around me when I’m like that. Today, I am making a decision to not be a moper. When life doesn’t turn out like I hoped it would, I will see it as Your provision or protection. I trust in Your sovereignty for my life, even when I don’t understand.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn

What are you discouraged about today?

Would you say that you are somewhat stuck because of it?

What do you think God is telling you to do?

Are you willing to take the first step of faith to move forward?

More from the Girlfriends

Today’s devotion came from my latest book, Take Hold of the Faith You Long For: Let Go, Move Forward, Live Bold. It’s all about how to get unstuck in your faith. Learn how to let go of all that holds you hostage to a “less than” life, and take hold of all that Jesus has done for you and placed in you…the faith you’ve always longed for. Check it out at www.takeholdthebook.com where you can download a free chapter and watch a video book trailer. The book also comes with a Bible study guide.

7 Responses to “When It’s Time to Stop Moping”

  1. Rosalyn says:

    I lost my job 3 weeks ago. I was the breadwinner and healthcare provider for my family of four. I have no real prospects at this time. I cannot pay any of my bills. As if that isn’t enough, My husband went out with his friends and got drunk again. When I expressed my frustration he told me he was done. He has since said he is sorry but I can’t forgive him this time. He told me that he said that because he had a really bad day with me. It’s clear that I don’t have a lot of worth in any arena right now. How long can I stay in my pity party? I’m fervently praying and praising God. I’ve asked for Him to reveal His plan for me as I don’t think I can humanly take this anymore. When is enough?

  2. Steff says:

    Thanks I really needed this today. God tied this and another devotion I read right together for me.
    Thanks for listening to God.

  3. Elaine says:

    I mope. Oh boy, do I mope. Every time something doesn’t turn out the way I expected it to – I mope. Which is probably just about every day. And I am getting tired of my own attitude. I always try to remind myself that this is just a little bump in the road. Something better is coming. God’s not done with you yet. But … all too soon … another bump comes along. And I mope & complain & grumble. Why Lord? Why? I feel that good things only come to other people, but definitely not me. Or so it seems to me. I pray the Lord will open my heart & my eyes & my mind to the endless possibilities He has in store for me. That He will give me His strength, courage & wisdom to constantly move forward, no matter what the circumstances may be in my life on any given day.

    “Sovereign LORD, you are God! Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant.” – 2 Samuel 7:28

    God bless you!

  4. Rachel says:

    I have been moping around due to the fact that on October 13, 2016 my life took a bad turn for the worst. I became septic from a kidney stone that refused to pass, it made me so sick that I almost died. Basically if my husband didn’t take me to the hospital when he did, I would have died that night. I had to have emergency surgery for a ureter stent in to bypass the stone. I am home now and without medical insurance having to wait for a new surgery to remove the stone and the stent. I cannot work until after this is done and I feel worthless and miserable over all of it.
    This message really spoke to me thank you for the honesty and bluntness of it. I needed it.
    I guess it’s time to get up off my butt now and stop moping, get to living my life and be happy. Thank you for allowing God to use you to speak to me.

  5. Gwyn says:

    Thanks so much for your timely messages. I enjoyed today’s so much we’re going to use it in our women’s jail ministry study tomorrow. Thank you for the inspiration. Keep them coming!

  6. Kay says:

    Thank you for these helpful words today. I have been in a rut lately. Feeling down, I needed to be told to get up & get going.
    I am retired and might I say “tired”, but I know God has more work for me to do, I just need to pray for him to guide me & quit moping!
    I love all of the Girlfriends devotions, keep up the good work.

  7. Cathy says:

    Wow, what a timely post—thank you! Be blessed because you have blessed me and I am forever grateful.

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