KEYWORDS: lord, god, faith, way, things

Don't Be Discouraged

David Berg

12/87—Keep the Faith & Trust the Lord!DO 2386

1. In case you don't know it, the Devil is working for the Lord! The Enemy is the Prosecuting Attorney, he's the one that always throws the law in your face & accuses you before the Judge! But that's his job, he's the "Accuser of the Saints!"—Rev.12:10; Job 1:6-12.—And he knows that you know what a mess you are, so he constantly reminds you of all your faults, he constantly reminds you of your failures. He constantly tries to discourage you that you'll never make it!

2. My, how many times the Devil tells me that! I don't think there's hardly a night that passes but what the Devil tells me, "Oh, look at you, how could you possibly be a leader?—Look at what a mess you are, what a failure you are! How could you have the nerve to try to lead these people & set yourself up as an example when you're such a failure & such a mess yourself!" Can you imagine what a responsibility is on me?

3. (Tongues) "I, Jesus, shall help your Father & I will not fail him & he shall accomplish the purpose unto which he has been sent!" TYJ! PTL! Hallelujah! I'm not a very good interpreter, but at least that was the idea. TYL!

4. I really agonise in prayer over some of our people sometimes! Oh, if it weren't for Heaven it would be one Hell of a job!—"If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable!"—1Cor.15:19. But it has its compensations, thank the Lord! We have our bad times‚ our hard times, but we also have some wonderful times, TYJ!

5. But the Devil will really try to frighten you, try to worry you, try to scare you out sometimes. It seems like he almost always attacks me in the middle of the night when everybody else is asleep‚ when I can't look to anybody else for help. I wouldn't in this World think of waking Mama up, as frail as she is. (Although she usually wakes up anyway & helps me fight!) She has a powerful spirit, let me tell you! She has a strong mind! She's got a powerful motor, but it's on a very weak chassis, & you've got to take good care of her, don't let her abuse her body & overdo.

6. That's one thing she never is, I have never seen her down, ever!—Except once in awhile she gets a little discouraged about her eyes, or about a headache, or about her own health. That's the only thing she ever gets a little down about & worries a little about. But about me?—She never has a doubt! She's never gotten down or discouraged no matter what I do, she always knows God's going to bring me through somehow!—"Of course it's God's Will‚ you're the king! Of course that's what you're supposed to do! Of course He's going to see you through! You can't fail because the Lord's with you!"

7. Well‚ that's probably one of my biggest faults or weaknesses‚ I'm prone to get discouraged about myself. Ever since I was a little kid, a skinny little runt‚ I've always had that tendency. My brother was big, strong & handsome, girls were always running after him, but I was a thin, quiet, introverted, studious & skinny little runt, & I always had a terrible inferiority complex ever since I can remember! I think I must have had it since I was born!

8. But God's strength is made perfect & manifested in our weakness!—2Cor.12:9.— And this is something you must learn before He can ever fully use you: That you're never going to be able to do what the Lord wants you to do by yourself or by your own will & self-control & making up your mind that you're going to do thus & so.—It's going to take prayer and utter dependence on the Lord!

9. You're going to have to be praying like a house afire, to only speak when you are‚ you might say, spoken to!—And it's not always easy to wait on the Lord & hold your tongue like that. But the Lord can help you do it! That's what Mama continually reminds me of. She says, "It doesn't matter‚ the Lord's going to do it! He's chosen you, & therefore He's going to carry you through!"

10. I've never seen her discouraged about anything important, except herself. I suppose I never really get discouraged about anything either, except myself. Aren't you that way too? I think that's the way the Devil attacks all of us. We know God's going to work in others' hearts‚ we know God's going to win this & that victory, we know God's not going to fail us financially, we know such-&-such, but, "Oh Lord, how am I ever going to make it!?"

11. I told Mama not long ago, "My God, I'm reminded of what they accused Jesus of: 'He saved others, Himself He couldn't save!'"—Mat.27:42. Even Paul got that way sometimes‚ he got discouraged & said, "I've saved others, but I'm afraid maybe I myself am going to become a castaway!"—He who had preached Eternal Salvation so much, no law, all grace‚ all love, he said, "Lest I myself become a castaway!"—1Cor.9:27.

12. Look at King David who had been so brave & courageous & had so much faith & killed the giant, killed lions, virtually almost did miracles in battle etc. After having lived with Saul for so many years‚ & then evading him & eluding him for so many years, there came a time when David got so discouraged he said, "Someday I shall surely die at the hands of Saul!"—1Sam.27:1.

13. So don't be too discouraged when you get discouraged! Everyone has been through it at some time or other. And because we know ourselves so well, we always get most discouraged about ourselves. "Lord, how can You use me when I'm such a mess?"


14. I'll tell you, I admire the courage & the faith of some of our precious people! Our people have done things that I have been afraid to do myself, they've rushed in where Angels fear to tread! It's been absolutely astounding to me what some of our people have done, & the faith they've had! I've said to myself, "Lord, I don't have that much faith, I wouldn't have done that‚ I couldn't have done that!" Well‚ I wasn't the one who had to do it.

15. It's like what Dwight L. Moody told the old ladies when they asked him, "Doctor Moody, have you got dying grace?"—Two self-righteous Holiness sisters who figured, of course, they had dying grace already! He shocked them by saying, "No, sisters, I'm sorry, I don't have dying grace!" "You mean‚ you‚ the great D.L. Moody, the great evangelist, you don't have dying grace yet?" He said, "No sisters—I'm not dying yet!"

16. Maybe sometimes you don't feel like you can do something.—You feel like, "How could they do it, I wouldn't even do it myself, I haven't even got the faith for it"—you don't have to! They're the ones that God is giving the faith to do it!

17. I used to have to try to inspire the faith of some of the people in our first schools during our early days of witnessing. They would come up with every excuse not to go out witnessing that you could possibly imagine! Some of them not only said they were sick, some literally got physically sick, they threw up, all kinds of things! They really did get sick!—Because they were scared to death to go out there on the streets or door-to-door! So they'd make every excuse.

18. Some would break down & weep & howl & say, "I have no burden for souls!—How can I go witnessing? How can I go out & preach the Gospel? I don't even have any burden for those people!" I'd say, "You just obey the Lord, that's your job! You just go out there & when you're face-to-face with that soul who needs Jesus & you see them & you've obeyed, God will give you the burden!"

19. —And it never failed! Once they finally got out & they went—even though they'd just been weeping & wailing about not being able to go—that first day was always really wonderful!—Because they'd come back with so many glowing testimonies of what God had done & how they'd gotten the burden for this soul‚ & won that soul to the Lord‚ & came home rejoicing! They literally fulfilled that Scripture, "They went forth with weeping, bearing precious seed, but they returned with rejoicing, bringing their sheaves with them!"—Psa.126:6. PTL!

20. You may be out somewhere & wonder why the Lord ever sent you on such a mission!—"Lord, how could You ever get me into such a mess? Why did You ever have to put me with this guy or that person to work with? How can I stand it any longer?" Well, you just obey the Lord, that's your part, that's all you have to do. The Lord will take care of that guy or that person! You just do what you're supposed to do & make sure you're obeying & doing God's Will, then it's up to the Lord to get them to obey & do His Will!

21. I must say‚ I have faith for what I'm supposed to do! For example, I'm never afraid to tackle a conference like this. Since the Lord first anointed me with His Spirit, I have never been afraid to face an audience‚ I have never been afraid to have to give a speech or a sermon or anything like that, from the time the Lord first told me, "You just open your mouth, that's all you have to do, & I will fill it!"—Psa.81:10.—And He's never failed!

22. Often I haven't had the faintest idea what the Lord was going to say! I didn't really know what I was going to talk to you all about today. But if you just do your part, obey & do what God sent you to do‚ the Lord will give you the grace! You may be tempted to worry about it sometimes‚ to wonder in the night, "How can I do it? What am I going to do? What am I going to say?"—Forget it! You just do your part, what you've got to do, & the Lord will do the rest! PTL!

23. I often don't know what God's going to do in certain situations! Who knows?—Maybe He's not going to do anything!—I can't really believe that, but sometimes I figure I might as well expect the worst!—Like the guy said, "Cheer up, things could be worse," & sure enough they got worse! But if you don't expect too much you won't be too disappointed!

24. But there are a lot of things I really do expect God to do, I know He will do! I found that out whenever I get up to teach a class on Bible Prophecy. Often I don't even understand every verse in the Chapter, but I know that when I have that responsibility, when I have to get up there & teach it & try to explain it & show it to people, I've got to do it, I just have to open my mouth & get started! If the Devil can stop you from getting started, he's defeated the whole thing!—But if you get started, that's half the battle won! "Well begun is half done!"

25. Then by the time I get to the verse that I didn't know the meaning of, I have never on God's Earth had the Lord fail to open my mind, my heart & my understanding, & reveal it to me right while I'm teaching! He gives me a revelation or understanding of the verse right then!—Because He's got to for the sake of the sheep! He's got to for your sake! It's my job to just start talking, & to let the Lord lead whichever way He wants to go.—And I just know He's going to do it!

26. You've just got to let the Lord do it! Let go & let God! You just do what God's told you to do! You can't have faith for the other guy‚ & you can't have his faith for you—although some people do sort of depend on other people's faith. You just do what God has told you to do, & He will give you the faith! You may not have dying grace now, but when you get there He'll give it to you! PTL!

27. The only thing that worries me about dying is having to leave you guys behind & wondering how you're going to make it! Well‚ I don't have to worry about that, that's God's business! He'll lead & guide you! Mama has got enough gumption, faith, iron-will, stubbornness & persistence! She thinks she hasn't got it, she thinks she hasn't got the strength or this or that, but let me tell you, when she gets going, things move & people move & she can outwork any of you when it comes down to it!—Even if it wears out her eyes & her head & her body, she will move things & get things done that she's got the burden for, come Hell or high water or hubby either!

28. If she's convinced & God's given her the faith for something, that that's what God wants done, she will argue for it! She will contend for the faith, & for the faith that God has given her for something! Sometimes she & Peter have had the faith for projects that they felt really needed to be done & pubs that needed to be made, & I really didn't have the burden or the faith for it myself because it wasn't my job, it wasn't the project that I had to have the faith for.

29. But I've never failed to have the faith to talk to people because I know the Lord is going to give them what they need if I just obey & open my mouth! From the first time I ever did that, God's never failed! And I have absolute faith—Lord help me—to tackle the different texts, transcriptions & rough drafts that have been stacking up, & I believe that God's going to help me to make the corrections & smooth them off & polish them up & make them just what He wants them to be!

30. A lot of times the poor typists don't get things quite straight. Sometimes I've wondered what in the World it was, I know I didn't say that, I couldn't have said that‚ I wouldn't have said that, what did I say? And the typist, she doesn't know either‚ because that's all she can get off of the tape! It's really funny sometimes! They make up words that they think I said, words you can't even find in the dictionary, but that's what it sounded like I said! So I pray every time that if it was really important, that the Lord gives it back to me.

31. There have been only a few times when I just could not fill in the gap, I didn't really know what I said, I couldn't remember. I prayed, "Lord, if it's important, bring it back to me!" So those few times it must not have been all that important! Maybe the Lord wanted me to leave it out! So I scratch out the surrounding text & just forget about it! I've said enough already, so why try to cook up something that I can't even remember?

32. But I know the Lord's not going to let me forget anything that's really important. Like I tell my children often‚ dear little Techi, when she'll want to say something sometimes & ask a question for which she has to interrupt me. I'll say, "Now wait just a minute, Honey, & then you can ask me the question, but let me finish this thought first!" She's full of questions, you know how little children are‚ that's the way they learn. And by the time I come back to her & say, "Oh, I'm sorry for making you wait, Honey, what was it you wanted to ask?", she's almost in tears, "I forgot it, Grandpa!" She really feels bad & she's embarrassed because she forgot what she wanted to ask! So I just say, "Don't worry‚ Honey‚ if it's important & you need to ask it, just ask the Lord to help you, He'll bring it back. If it wasn't, then it's better you did forget. Trust the Lord!"

33. So you've just got to trust the Lord! If you just can't do something, don't insist on doing it!—Because if the Lord doesn't do it, certainly you can't do it! He says, "Without Me ye can do nothing!"—Jn.15:5. If He can't do it or won't do it, don't you insist on it! You've just got to learn to let go & let God & trust the Lord to do it! I don't know how many times we've read in reports, "This or that wasn't working out, there was all kinds of opposition, but we prayed, we had special prayer with the Family‚ & the next day the Lord completely reversed the situation in our favour!"—Put things in God's hands & trust Him!


34. Whenever a situation is uncertain & I'm not exactly sure if a thing is God's perfect Will & whether He's going to work it out or not‚ I always fall back on this one shock cushion: I always pray, "Nevertheless, Lord, You're still the Boss & You're still God, & if things don't work out just the way I expected or the way I hoped or the way I was driving or pushing for, if that's not what You want me to do, if You have some other idea & You're going to accomplish something maybe even better‚ or maybe teach me a lesson I need to learn, or whatever Your purpose is, Lord help me to just do what You want me to do!—'Not my will but Thine be done!'"—Luke 22:42.

35. We may sometimes have all kinds of ideas of what we think ought to be done.—But what if it turns out that our ideas are not exactly what the Lord wants? The classic example I always think about is that time when He absolutely turned us around when we had our reservations made‚ tickets bought & were packed & even had the taxi booked & everything else, & were almost on our way! We even had the house rented in Uruguay & had sent someone all the way over there to work with Juan to get the house rented & everything ready! (See ML 1283.)

36. But I couldn't sleep all that night, the Lord really worked me over! He said, "You're going the wrong direction, you're going back to the past! You call that the New World, but that's the Old World! I want to send you to the New World, the Lands of the Rising Sun!" "But Lord," I argued, "I don't speak any language out there!" He answered, "But they speak yours!"

37. I think that was one of the hardest things I ever had to do in my whole life! I could agree with the Lord, He gave me every answer, that was the easy part‚ the Lord telling me that He didn't want me to go to South America, but to go the complete opposite direction.—The very night before we were supposed to leave, all packed & ready to go! That was the easy part, yielding to the Lord & saying, "Okay, Lord, You're the Boss, whatever You say goes! If You say so‚ I know it's right & it'll be all right & everything will work out! PYL!"

38. The hard part was‚ "But Lord, please help me when I have to go in now & tell Peter! He is surely going to think I have cracked this time! I have asked him to do some pretty difficult things before & he's had to take my word for it & the Lord's Word for it, but so far he's survived & he's done'm & they worked.—But Lord, this one is just almost too much for the poor guy!"

39. The Devil puts all kinds of doubts & fears in your mind about what other people might think or do. I thought, "Oh Lord!—What if Mama & Peter get together & decide that I've really finally cracked up! After all, I've done enough things already to make'm think I'm crazy, maybe sometimes they worry about me a little bit.—But this is it!" Peter could have thought, "I've had a hard time believing & doing all these other things‚ but this is really too much!—After all this trouble I've been through to buy these tickets, get the reservations, get the money changed, do all this, that & the other, & now he expects me to go down & tell those travel agent girls that we're not going to go after all!"—I was sympathising with him!

40. How did you feel going back to that woman & telling her that you're now going to go the exact opposite direction, that instead of South America now you wanted a flight to Sri Lanka! It must not have been easy! (Peter: It was OK! At least I knew we were doing the right thing!) It must have been embarrassing. She must have shaken her head.—Anybody with confirmed tickets & reservations, to suddenly come down & decide they don't want to go to South America but they want to go to Sri Lanka, of all places! It must not have been easy!—She must have thought we were crazy!

41. I think I sometimes worry more about how others are going to react if it's a sudden dramatic drastic change! It's easier for me to receive it because I've known the Lord to work that way so many times!

42. So don't be too surprised if what you plan is not always exactly what the Lord is planning or what He's going to do! My brother used to say, "If you don't expect anything you'll never be disappointed!" Well, that's rather extreme. But if you're not absolutely sure & the Lord hasn't given some absolute word on it, don't be too surprised if you find He has some surprises in store for you!

43. We will do what God has ordained us to do & commissioned us to do, whatever it is! But what if it's not exactly what we thought it should be?—As the one series was labelled, "What If"? What if things don't work out just that way or the way we hoped or the way we were thinking?—What if God changes plans? What if He does something else? What if He leads another way?

44. But what God has appointed us for & anointed us to do & given us the faith to do, sooner or later you'll find out that it works, if you continue in the calling wherein you are called & do what you're supposed to do & let others do what they're supposed to do! PTL? Can you trust God for that? Can you trust God even if you have to sometimes go right into the fiery furnace? "But if not, we'll still not bow down before your filthy idol, we'll still trust our God no matter what!"—Dan. 3:17,18.—Even if He doesn't do things exactly the way we expect or the way we pray or what we thought He would!

45. I've even had the Lord trick me into situations sometimes, deliberately get me into a situation for reasons that I thought were His Will, but He had something entirely different in mind!—Like that time He told us to go East: He got us all packed‚ He got all of our forsake–all taken care of—we had given it to the local Homes to sell & whatnot—& He had us thinking we were going to Latin America! And the leaders there were thrilled we were coming to help them, & we thought we were going to land where they spoke a language which we could speak & understand.

46. It was all very logical, very reasonable, understandable, of course it was the place we should go, there was no doubt or question in our minds about it! So the Lord let us keep thinking that so we'd get all packed & get rid of the forsake-all & be all ready & have the money & be prepared to go.—But not where we thought we were going! Do you get the point?

47. God is frequently full of surprises! He loves to do things which are not according to natural expectation! Are you willing to trust Him no matter what, even if He seems to change His mind?—Even if you thought it was this but it turned out to be that, are you still going to trust Him & follow God even if He didn't do it the way you wanted Him to?

48. I'll never forget that morning when I had to go tell Peter! I even argued with the Lord, I said, "Lord, couldn't we at least go there first? We've got money put down on the house & all of this preparation made & these poor boys have gone to all this trouble to find it & rent it, the deal was closed with the owner & he's now gone off to God knows where!—How can I tell Peter?" I even thought, "Lord‚ maybe we could go by way of Latin America!" I tried everything I could think of to rationalise going on to Latin America first! But the Lord told me, "Don't try to get around it, don't try to hedge on it‚ don't try to rationalise it, don't try to excuse yourself!—Just admit you were going the wrong direction, you made a mistake! You've got to admit it, confess it!"

49. Well, at least we were all ready to go, all packed & ready! So dear Peter, he went down & worked it out with the girl & she had to cash in our tickets & re-issue a whole bunch of new tickets & change all the reservations & do everything that had to be done! She must still be thinking, "That's the craziest bunch of people I ever dealt with! One day they're going to South America & the next day they're going to Sri Lanka!—What kind of nuts were those guys, anyway?" Well, it worked! It was God's Will!

50. So PTL! In spite of all the nights when the Devil throws all those doubts at me & tries to discourage me & get me to quit, the Lord always gets the victory! The Enemy says, "What are you trying to do this impossible job for? Who are you?—Look what a mess you are! How can you lead this Family? How can you do this?" Well, I don't know how we can do it, we just obey the Lord & let Him do it!—And He's done it! Hallelujah! So for God's sake, follow God! For God's sake, trust the Lord that He knows what He's doing!

51. I don't know what I'm doing, except I know that right here tonight with you I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing! So in that I know what I'm doing‚ even if I don't know what I'm going to say! I'm just doing what I'm supposed to be doing, & I've now done it!—And it's time for me to quit! The only thing I don't know how to do sometimes is to quit talking, that's my problem! So let's pray!

52. Hallelujah! Thank You Lord for what You've given us tonight. Thank You for leading & guiding. We know that You've given what was needed‚ what we all need! TYL! Now we need sleep. Help us, Lord, most of all, just to yield & follow Thee, let go & let You do it, to just follow Thee, Lord! Whichever way You lead, even if it's the opposite direction from which we've been going. TYL!

53. Lord‚ we know not what the future holds‚ but we know Who holds the future! So we just put our hands in Thine, Lord, & we follow Thee! In Jesus' name. PTL! Thank You for keeping us!


54. Even when we fail, the Lord never fails & He can do it! Sometimes He might just try to show us, "Well, even if you fail, I'll not fail you!—Even if you fail Me!" He's promised that. "Though we believe not, yet He abideth faithful, for He cannot deny Himself!"—2Tim.2:13. Even if all else fails, He'll never fail. He will be with you until the end of the World!—Mat.28:20. Thank the Lord! Do you believe that? (Fam: Yes, Sir!) No matter what goes wrong?—No matter what goes haywire?—"But if not!" So, what if?

55. That "What If" series really shocked some people, some of our orthodox teachers & our best teachers of orthodoxy! I think they were really a little worried about me, thinking, "Dad's straying from the faith!", when I got that out, that maybe it's not just like what we interpreted & what we thought! I think the Lord probably did that to test some of us, to see if we'll still follow no matter what!

56. Dear Apostle Peter, after that flesh-&-blood sermon where everybody left, it was almost like he was looking around for a place to go too! But he just finally gave up & said, "Well, Lord, to whom shall we go? You're all we've got!"—Jn.6:68. So I guess you're stuck with me. But so far it's worked! TYL!

57. But don't put all your trust in me, I could fail you tonight! I could get in one of those big battles with the Devil, who knows, I could get discouraged & give up! Of course, I haven't yet, TTL! But regardless of what happens, the Lord will never fail you! Praise the Lord‚ Jesus never fails‚ & He'll always see you through!

58. And though I have battles, I expect Him to see me through too! And Mama knows I'm going to pull through! She never doubts a hair, not a bit! She knows, she really knows! They have their problems with me sometimes, but they know I'm going to pull through somehow because they know & trust the Lord!

59. PYL! Hallelujah! Thank You, Lord, for all that You have done! It's all been You‚ Lord, not me, that's for sure. All of us‚ Lord, could never have done it, but You've done it! If there's anything good, You did it! TYJ! We can blame any mistakes on ourselves, but Lord, You never make a mistake, & You "will perfect & complete that which concerneth us!"—Psa.138:8. PTL!—Amen?