“Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil” (Eph. 6:11, NLT).

One of the most frequent strategies used by the devil is discouragement. Too often, when people don’t see all the results they had hoped to see, they give up that hope and grow discouraged. Discouragement may come through disappointments, challenges, setbacks, distractions, rejection, or delayed answers to prayer. Through any means, allowing discouragement in our lives is dangerous, because it can keep us from fulfilling the will of God.

The good news is that we don’t have to be discouraged! God has told us in His word, “Be strong and of good courage … for the LORD your God, He is the one who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you” (Deut. 31:6, NKJV).

Here are seven principles we can follow to avoid discouragement and stay encouraged in God:

1. Be prepared for the devil’s tactics.
2. Confess God’s word.
3. Make a conscious decision to be of good courage.
4. Focus on good things.
5. Keep working at your calling.
6. Fellowship with other believers.
7. Praise the Lord at all times.

Over the next few days, I’ll share more about each of these principles as an encouragement to you to be strong in the Lord. For today, “Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the LORD” (Psalm. 31:24, NKJV).

-Evan Jackson