2 Corinthians 4:1 – 6:2, Nehemiah 8
2 Corinthians 4:1 – Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart.
2 Corinthians 4:16 – So, we do not lose heart.
2 Corinthians 5:6 – So we are always of good courage.
Lord Jesus, grant me a spirit. Give me a courage and a determination like his. Give me a renewed heart and steadfast courage so that I remain confident and heartened no matter what happens with me, no matter what is going on in my life, and no matter how things appear to be going. O Lord, take not your Holy Spirit from me, but grant me your steadfast Spirit to sustain me. Restore to me the joy of my salvation and grant me strength and courage of spirit. I need this, Lord, because it is so easy for me to lose heart and grow discouraged. I am weak. I often don’t get done what I set out to do, not because of laziness or laxity, but because it doesn’t work out the way I thought it might. I am often attacked my temptations of discouragement by the Devil so that I just want to throw up my hands. “What’s the point anyway,” he tempts me to think. I face obstacles within my own heart. I face obstacles from outside, even from people who are within the Christian family. Lord Jesus, all of this hardship and difficult, it turns me back to you. Help me remember what Paul remembered when he was attacked like this. Help me remember that the work of my calling is a mercy from you. I am called to this only by your grace and mercy. More than that, since you have called me to this calling, you will also be with me in this calling and you will equip me and strengthen me to fulfill this calling. Help me to remember that all of this hardship is preparing me for an eternity with you and glory to come with it. Help me to remember to lean on you in all my troubles. These troubles highlight my weaknesses and my failures. But more than that, these troubles spotlight your glory, power, might and love. Lift up my eyes, I pray O Lord, from these light and momentary troubles to the love that you have for me. Turn my heart toward the power that is at work in me and is just as surely at work in this world. Turn my mind to things above where you, O Jesus, are seated at God’s right hand. And then, Lord Jesus, as I turn my heart and mind there, grant me your Spirit and a spirit like Paul’s so that I refuse to quit. Amen.