Is it possible for righteous, godly, Spirit-filled Christians to become so low and downcast that they feel they can’t go on? To actually come to the brink of giving up? These are believers who are close to Jesus, who know his heart and mind, have done battle in prayer, and experienced his miracles.
How could it be possible that such Christians get pressed down and troubled, in despair and despondency? To some, it seems that once they gave their life to the Lord, all they got in return was suffering. No one, within the church or without, has ever understood how a loving God can allow those who have given their all to him to go through times of great trouble and despair.
Consider the man Job who famously suffered and came back to a victorious life. Or Jeremiah, the weeping prophet; also, another prophet, Elijah. They all suffered depression and feelings of defeat during their trials but God brought them back.
In the New Testament, we see Paul, the apostle. He truly was a godly, precious man who had given up the whole world that he might win Christ. He spent every breath in the cause of the Master. He had a revelation of Christ as did no other person on earth and, further, his epistles have instructed God’s people throughout the centuries.
Yet, Paul encountered turmoil and trials. When he went to Asia to preach the gospel, he received only trouble: “For we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, of our trouble which came to us in Asia: that we were burdened beyond measure, above strength, so that we despaired even of life" (2 Corinthians 1:8).
How could this happen to a man so mightily used of God? Well, our Father allows his people to go through many difficulties so that their faith may be built from it. So how do you come to victory? The secret, plain and simple, is to trust in the Holy Spirit, who abides in you. And then you pray and read the Word of God faithfully. Lay hold of your special promises and you will find that even when you are ready to give up, he remains faithful to deliver you. Hallelujah!