It's Time | Discouraged And Doubtful, But Not Defeated

Do You Struggle With Feeling Discouraged And Losing Faith?

James Greer
Mar 26, 2023    20m
The enemy wishes for you to struggle with feeling discouraged and losing your faith. We can become overwhelmed as a result of life's draining pressures. To discourage us, the enemy tells us lies. Jesus wishes to uplift us. He wants us to understand that He is our savior and that nothing can stand in His way. Video recorded at Pineville, Louisiana.

messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

James Greer: [00:00:03] Morning, Journey Church. Man. And I like to preach to people. And y'all are here today. Amen. Whew. Boy, y'all are excited, too. Amen. Man, I'm so excited about the message today, though, because everybody has times they're discouraged and doubting. But what I want you to know today, if you really, really listen, even though you have times of discouragement and doubting, you don't have to leave defeated. In fact, the very message comes from Ecclesiastes 3:11. It says he has made everything beautiful in its time. So you might be here today and you say, Man, that's not beautiful in my life. But Jesus can make it in his time. In fact, I think the verses were written in chronological order because he said he's also, he said eternity in the hearts of every man, woman, boy, and girl. See, if you're here today, God says, I want you to know there is an eternity. And matter of fact, there's a hole in your heart. Until you invite Jesus Christ, can't be filled. But today it can be filled. Amen. Yet they cannot even fathom what God has done from the beginning. Then it goes on to say this. See, the thing's written in order. I know that there is nothing better for man, woman, boy, and girl than to be happy and to do good while they live, that each of them may eat and drink and find satisfaction in all their toll on their job is a gift of God.

James Greer: [00:01:26] In other words, it's written like this. It says, Listen, you got to believe in everything, God will make everything beautiful in its time. Everything. You got to settle that you're going to Heaven in eternity. So you say, I believe that everything God's going to make beautiful everything in its time. I've settled that I'm going to go to Heaven. And because of that, God said, Listen, I can live a good life while I'm here and I can be satisfied at work. And it's all a gift from God. What a wonderful gift God has for us. Amen. So let's learn how to go from being discouraged and doubting, but not be defeated. See, now, Thomas, he was not with the other disciples when Jesus appeared to them. So he kind of doubted and he really didn't believe. Kind of like many people here today, you might not really believe that Jesus died and rose from the dead. But before you leave today, I hope you do. It says now, Thomas, he called the twin, one of the 12, was not with them when Jesus came. It goes on. And the other disciples therefore said to him, said to Thomas, We've seen the Lord. You'd think, Man, when he came to him and said, Man, we saw the Lord, Thomas and everybody would be excited. But you know, we'd never seen Jesus died and be raised again.

James Greer: [00:02:48] We've seen the Lord. So he said to them, This is Thomas. Unless I see his hands and the prints of the nails and put my finger into the prints of the nails and put my hands into his side, I'm not going to even believe. See, Thomas had really been discouraged at the death of Jesus, and they were all really hoping for an earthly kingdom, not a Heavenly kingdom. See, many of you today are still doing the same thing. You're looking for an earthly kingdom. You're trying to find the love and the joy and the peace, and you're trying to build your earthly kingdom here. But Jesus really didn't come to give you an earthly kingdom. Now he came to give you a kingdom in your heart. See, the love and joy and peace that Jesus came and died and rose from is in your heart. You can only have the love and joy and peace when you accept Jesus Christ. It's in your heart, not here on earth. So we'll all have times of disappointment and doubts and discouragement. And I can't tell you. I've had it business, I've had it in my family, I've had it financially. And I mean, those times are tough. I've had times where I was so discouraged I didn't even know if I was going to make it anymore. I didn't even want to get out of my house.

James Greer: [00:04:01] I didn't want anybody to see me. Had all kinds of terrible thoughts. I didn't know if I was going to make it anymore at work, at home with my family, anything. I mean, you just, I don't like those times, but everybody's going to have times like that. That's why when you got to really believe that Jesus will finally make everything beautiful in its time. You kind of wonder what really causes discouragement. What causes such disappointment? Well, it's loss can do that. And you lost your dreams. See, really, Thomas, see, Jesus was his leader. It was his future. And all of a sudden, when Jesus gets crucified, he said, Man, not only have I lost a loved one, I don't have a future anymore. He really felt, what am I going to live for? And the Bible says, even the righteous man falleth seven times. Well, I falleth more than seven times. So maybe I'm on the way up. I don't know. You're going to fall. You're going to get discouraged. You're going to feel defeated. One of the main causes of discouragement is when you lose your confidence. And I've had that happen. I can remember one of the first times I was going to go in business, I was so confident. I was so excited. I was so proud. I went in underprepared. I went in at the wrong time.

James Greer: [00:05:20] I went in the wrong way. And I mean, a couple of months later, I had to shut it down and I lost everything. I lost my confidence. I lost my hope. I said, God. And, you know, so I wondered if it ever come back again. Sometimes when you face those challenges, you're just so discouraged. But then other times, I can tell you, I've faced unbelievable challenges that looked impossible. But yet God was with me and I knew it. And I said, Man, I'm going to be able to just walk right through this. I can remember positively one day a guy came in my office that I knew real well. And he said, It looks impossible for you to make it. He said, it looks like you're going to lose everything you have. What are you thinking is going to happen? I said, You know what I really think? He said, What? God seen me through it. I really believe God's going to do it again. He said, You don't really believe that. I said, I do. He said, Well, I quit. That was encouraging. But those things are going to happen and they're going to happen to you. You're going to be discouraged. You're going to be hopeless. You're going to be depressed, and those things are going to happen. Sometimes we get a lot of problems because God's trying to make us discomfort where he can build character.

James Greer: [00:06:37] I don't like that. God's more concerned in my character than He is my comfort. The problem was this. It was a spiritual problem. It wasn't. Thank you. It was a spiritual problem. It was not a people problem. Thomas was having a spiritual problem, not a people problem. He was lacking in his faith, believing what Jesus had already told him. And many times, if you're not careful, what you're having is a spiritual problem, but you're fighting people about it and you're blaming them for a problem. And if you'd get right spiritually, it'd take care of the other problem. That is really good, Brother James. You see, Ephesians 6:3 says, therefore, take up the whole armor of God that you might be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all, you're still standing. In other words, you're going to have the battle, but when these battle, keep standing. Another lie of the devil is this. God has left me or God doesn't care. God has deserted him. Can I tell you something? God doesn't care? God cares so much He sent his only begotten son to die for me and you. That's pretty good care. Amen. I'm not giving any of my kids for any of you. Just the way it is. And nor would I. But he did. So, you know, it's a lie that he doesn't care. But sometimes when we're really hurting, when we're really discouraged, when we really feel defeated, we say God doesn't care about me.

James Greer: [00:08:04] He's left me. But the truth, God, the Bible says and the Bible is true. And let every man be a liar. Even your thoughts will lie to you. But God will not. Hebrews 13:5 says, for he himself said, I'll never leave you nor forsake you. Never leave you nor forsake. If you're a Christian. So you might boldly say the Lord, the one ultimate authority, the one that's in control, the one that the angels, the host of angels, all he has to do is say and they'll come and take care of it. I'll be your helper. The helper is another name for the Holy Spirit, the one God's [inaudible], the one that gives you the fruit of the Spirit. The Lord is my helper. I will not fear what man can do to me. So in other words, I'm going to tell you that's a lie. He can never leave you and never forsake you. He can't leave you anyway. Because when you get saved, the Holy Spirit comes and lives in you. And the only time he leaves is when you get saved. He going to bring you to Heaven. Other than that, he's always with you. Amen. So the Lord can't leave with you. That is just a lie. Third. How much Jesus wants to go from discouraged to encouragement.

James Greer: [00:09:09] Verse 26, Look at this. And after eight days, his disciples were again inside. Stay inside. Y'all are inside the church. Amen. And Thomas with him. And Jesus came and the door being shut. What was the door? Shut. And he stood in the midst and he said, Peace be to you. Can I tell y'all something? Y'all are inside the church. Most of you. If you're outside, you need to come in. But you're inside the church. The doors are shut. Can I tell you that does not keep Jesus out because Jesus is in the house. Amen. And then he has a message for you. No matter what you're going through, y'all know what the message is. Peace to you. See, some of you came in here all troubled, all upset. And Jesus said, Listen, you don't have to worry about it. There is nothing that can keep me out. I'm here spiritually and I have a message. And the message is peace be to you. I love that. Because there's nothing you can do to keep Jesus out. It's also a picture of how much he wants to encourage you. Physically, he's not going to walk through this door, but spiritually, he's saying, Look, I wanted to encourage Thomas so bad. I want you to see that I walk through shut doors to get to him, to encourage him. And that's how much he wants to encourage you.

James Greer: [00:10:26] In fact, there's really nothing you can do to keep Jesus out. You can't shut enough doors and you can't say enough bad words. Revelation 3:20 says this. Behold, I stand at the door and I knock. He said, Well, you just said, He can walk right through the door. Yeah, he can walk through that physical door. Now he's talking about your spiritual heart. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I'm going to come in to him and I'm going to dine and I'm going to fellowship with him. I'm going to encourage him. I'm going to love him. And he with me. That's for me and you today. That's for those that are here in the church. The Lord said, I'm near to those that are brokenhearted. He said, I heal the brokenhearted. He said, you know, he said, I'm going to fellowship with you. It's a picture of illustrate how much he wants to encourage you. He said, verse 27, he said to Thomas. He said you really want to reach your finger in here? Look at my hands. Reach your hand in here. Put it into my side. Do not be an unbeliever, but believe. He didn't want Thomas to stay encouraged. He didn't want Thomas to be an unbeliever. He wanted him to believe. Translated to Journey Church, He does not want anybody in here to be an unbeliever. He wants you to leave today being a believer.

James Greer: [00:11:52] He doesn't want anybody here to leave discouraged. He wants you to leave encouraged. That's what he was wanting. And then he says this. And Thomas answered and said to him, my Lord, my God. He said, It's not just Jesus. He's my Lord and he's my God. Now. Now they're talking in a personal and a powerful way. Thomas is almost encouraged. He's excited. He said, Now he's my Lord. He's my God. He's almost overwhelmed with belief. I want to give you something. In Romans 12:3, it says, God has given every man, woman, boy, and girl a measure of faith. What God is saying that everybody here, God has given you enough faith. If you'll open the door for God to encourage you or to get saved, there's not one person upstairs, downstairs, or watching online that cannot get encouraged today or that cannot get saved. Because one, he said, I'm standing at the door knocking. Number two, he said in Romans, I give every one of you enough faith for it to happen. And it was a picture of Jesus going through the door and going to Thomas and telling him how much I don't want you to unbelieve, I want you to believe. And then he went on to say this. He said, Jesus said to him, Thomas, because you have not seen me and you have believed, but blessed are those who have not seen me and yet believe. That's us.

James Greer: [00:13:13] Amen. He said, Thomas, I wan' you saved. But listen, there's another generation coming. Generation at Journey Church today. He said, You hadn't seen me and you can believe so you can really be blessed. So what I say is believe. Amen. So y'all believe Jesus died and rose from the grave? Amen. You can be blessed. And truly, Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples. There were so many that couldn't even write them in the book if there were so many things that he did. But these are written that you may believe in Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. And you know what? And that believing you may live, you may have a life, an abundant life in his name. So guess what? I want to know how you can go from being discouraged to encouraged, how to go from doubting to discovering, how to go from doubting to shouting, how to disappointment to anointing. Well, first of all, you've got to make absolutely positive that Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior. You got to believe that he's in control of everything. You got to believe that he can take anything. And in his time, it will be beautiful because he did it. See, Thomas was discouraged. He was defeated. But when it was the right time, Jesus came to him and he said, Thomas, if it's going to take it, I'll walk through the walls, feel the holes, feel my side.

James Greer: [00:14:30] I'll do whatever it is to encourage you. But first of all, today, God's giving you enough faith. If you're not sure if you died, you'd go to Heaven, today is the day. In just a minute, I'm going to give you an opportunity downstairs, upstairs to accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior. Some of you maybe have never even followed through in public baptism. Just like a while ago, like we celebrated, like we're going to celebrate in a little while. And you hadn't seen Jesus physically, but I can tell you he's been here spiritually. I think we've already had 220 people saved this year. That's pretty well Jesus working. Amen. I think with that baptism this year alone, that made 44. 44. You might not have seen him physically, but you've seen him spiritually. This year alone, you might not have seen him physically, but we've already had 85 new members and you might be the next one that joins. So God has just worked in so many ways. I sure wouldn't want you to leave and not let him work in your life. So before we go any further, I want you to stand for just a minute. Heads bowed and eyes shut. With your heads bowed and your eyes shut. And you might be here today and say, Today's the day.

James Greer: [00:15:58] I want to put my faith in Jesus Christ as my Lord. And say, guess what? He's already told us in Romans. He gave you enough faith to do that. So whether you're down here or up there and did you say today's the day I want to put my faith in Jesus Christ, in just a moment, I'm going to count to three and raise your hand. And you can do that. Maybe today's the day you want to rededicate your life. Maybe today is the day you're going to follow through in baptism. Maybe today is the day you said, I'm ready to make Journey Church my home church. So whatever it is, accept Christ as your savior, rededicate your life, follow through in baptism, or make journey Church your home church, right now, as I count to three, just raise your hand. One, two, three. Just raise your hand right up real high. Just raise your hand up there. Raise your hand. Rededicate your life. Accept Jesus Christ as your savior. Follow through in public baptism. Keep your hand up. Ushers, if you will, in a minute, make sure you get the packet back. Front cover back. Okay. Okay, one more time. If you want to accept Jesus as your savior, follow through in baptism, rededicate your life, or join the church, just raise your hand. If you have not received a package, just raise your hand up.

James Greer: [00:17:33] For those who have done that, just stay with me because we're going to do a couple of things there. First of all, just keep your heads bowed and we're going to pray together. Say, Father, I know I've sinned. Forgive me. Of my sins. Come into my heart. Be the lord of my life. I believe Jesus died on the cross, rose on the third day for my sins. Amen. Now our heads are still bowed. And ushers, if you'll get the cards back from them. Maybe you're here today and you came and said, you know that was for me. I know I'm saved, but I'd like for you to pray for me for discouragement. And I just want you to raise your hand and I'm going to pray for you specifically about encouragement. Just raise your hand. Amen. Just raise your hand. Amen. Raise your hand. Amen. Amen. Amen. You're not here by accident. You're here by divine appointment. Amen. I got you. Amen. Okay. You can put them down. Father, I just thank you for the message today. And I thank you that you said you're at the door knocking and we just simply pray that everyone here opens their door, their heart to you today. I thank you that you said you would come in and you would fellowship with them. I pray that they could experience your fellowship right now. I thank you that in Romans you said that you gave every one of us a measure of faith.

James Greer: [00:19:01] God, give us that faith that we need right now to know that not only that we're saved, but that you would encourage us and we could leave here more encouraged than we came and that we know that it says in Matthew that there's absolutely nothing impossible for you and God. Those that are sick, God, they can begin to feel emotional and physical and spiritual healing in their life. Those that feel hopeless, God, that they can start having hope. Now. God, there's those that need people to pray with them and pray for them. And God, you said all those that are heavy laden, let them come unto you and they could find rest. And God, we have ushers up here that will pray with them, that will guide them, that'll direct them. Maybe those that have problems and you need a promise. We've got ushers up here that will help them find the right promises. Maybe they want to physically come and say, Hey, I want to join the church. Maybe they want to come and say, Hey, would you help me walk through the baptism or help me walk through the steps of salvation? Whatever God has laid upon your heart, I pray that you let God have His will and His way. I pray in the precious name of Jesus. Amen.

Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.
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Journey Church
2900 Donahue Ferry Rd
Pineville, Louisiana 71360