We all face frustrations in our lives. It’s a part of life for just about everyone. It comes because of unresolved problems or unfulfilled goals, desires, or needs. [These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. John 16:33] The definition of frustration is;
(n) the feeling of being upset or annoyed, especially because of inability to change or achieve something.
Frustration is often manifested by feelings of discouragement, anger, and annoyance. Since each of these is condemned by scripture, we need to learn how to handle frustrations in our lives.
I’d like to offer a modification to the current definition of frustration:
“the feeling of being upset or annoyed, especially because they DON’T KNOW HOW to change or achieve something.”
|ANGER: Col 3:8 But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.
DISCOURAGEMENT: Ps 27:14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
The regular definition has a feeling of inability, helplessness and hopelessness. That’s just not true. We DO HAVE ABILITY to do something about those things that frustrate us. There is hope.
OVERCOMING FRUSTRATION: Below are a few ways we can minimize or even eliminate frustration using the example of evangelism.
LEARN / GROW: Ask Yourself, “What Is Working?” Arguing with folks is very counterproductive. Has anyone ever been won over by an argument? Evangelism used to be frustrating when all I ever did was use conjecture without ever opening the Bible. When we study, we can turn to passages and show them to people. Their anger with us then becomes anger at the Bible and they know they can’t do that.
But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. [2Peter 3:18]
LOOK AHEAD: Many sorrows come upon us because we just don’t pay attention. When speaking with someone about salvation they often jump around from subject to subject. Knowing ahead of time about this, we can prepare ourselves to remain on the subject at hand.
See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, [Ephesians 5:15]
TRY AGAIN: We will face Mockers which can be very aggravating. However, it’s not new, Paul faced mockers when he preached [Acts 17:32]. What did he do? He kept on preaching, he just took those who wanted to hear and spoke with them.
So Paul departed from among them. Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed. [Acts 17:33-34a]
AUTOPILOT: Critics of the Lord’s church will use about 10 of the same arguments (i.e. thief on the cross, just love, the Roman road etc.). Rather then let that bother us, prepare an answer. If we’re going to get the same objections from most everyone we preach to, learn the answers. Now, instead of frustration, it makes me smile which always improves the interaction.
Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. [Col 4:6]
STOP FIGHTING GOD: We often believe that just because we’re having a conversation with someone that we’re doing God’s will. Not so. When we face the mockers, the disinterested or the haters we end up in an argument and, fighting against God. Jesus explicitly told us not to do this.
Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you. [Matthew 7:6]
REMAIN POSITIVE: We need to acknowledge that we can’t change people, they must want to change. Once we admit that the only way things will change is when we change, then we can have a new perspective about frustrations and recognize them as just challenges to overcome. Challenges are good and very rewarding. [Mat 5:10-12]
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. [John 14:27]
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. [Philippians 4:6-10]
A life of frustration is no way to live and can never glorify God because it contains no joy, it has no hope and it leads to sinful attitudes.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. [Galatians 5:22-23]