Frustration can be a powerful negative force in an individual’s life. According to Wikipedia, “Frustration is a common emotional response to opposition. Related to anger and disappointment, it arises from the perceived resistance to the fulfillment of individual will.”1
For many frustration can be extremely paralyzing. It has both external and internal forces. Externally, we feel frustrated when there is some kind of obstacle hindering our progress or success. Internally, if we are unable to overcome the emotions that come with the perceived hindrances, we can be tempted to give up.
If you are a Christian, you have an enemy who wants to use frustration as a source of discouragement in your life. He wants to stop the plan of God for your life and your purpose.
We find a great example of this in the book of Ezra. There was great opposition to the purpose of rebuilding the temple.
Then the people of the land tried to discourage the people of Judah. They troubled them in building, and hired counselors against them to frustrate their purpose all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia. Ezra 4:4-5 NKJV
Their enemy wanted to “frustrate their purpose”! Look below at the meaning of that word “frustrate” from the original text.
OT:6565 : parar (paw-rar’); a primitive root; to break up (usually figuratively, i.e. to violate, frustrate
KJV – any ways, break (asunder), cast off, cause to cease, clean, defeat, disannul, disappoint, dissolve, divide, make of none effect, fail, frustrate, bring (come) to naught, utterly, make void. 2
We can see from this definition that the enemy uses frustration to STOP us from accomplishing the plan of God and to destroy our destiny. Let me share five simple steps found in Psalm 37:1-7 to help you overcome the negative force of frustration in your life (the full text is at the end). Every time you feel frustrated, replace those feelings with the below instructions.
- FRET NOT: Replace fret with faith. Instead of focusing on the obstacles, rehearse past victories.
- TRUST IN THE LORD AND DO GOOD: Instead of focusing on what you cannot do, concentrate on what you can.
- DELIGHT YOURSELF IN THE LORD AND HE WILL GIVE YOU THE SECRET DESIRES AND PETITIONS OF YOUR HEART: Cultivate dynamic devotion to the Lord! Take your attention off the problem and delight in the problem solver!
- COMMIT YOUR WAY TOO THE LORD, TRUST ALSO IN HIM AND HE WILL BRING IT TO PASS: Stay committed to the purpose. You will not have opportunity without opposition. Allow the delay to increase your determination that the outcome is worth your perseverance.
- BE STILL AND REST IN THE LORD; WAIT FOR HIM AND PATIENTLY LEAN YOURSELF ON HIM: Remember if you are getting tired, you are getting close! A distance runner does not get tired in the first part of the race, this happens close to the finish line. A position of rest is an attitude of trust that God is big enough to bring His purposes to fulfillment.
Next time you feel like you are pushing against a brick wall and you are overwhelmed with feelings of frustration, I hope you will stop and remember these five simple steps to turn the force of frustration into a force that propels you into a deeper trusting relationship with your Heavenly Father.
Psalm 37:1-7 Amplified Bible (underline added for emphasis)
FRET NOT yourself because of evildoers, neither be envious against those who work unrighteousness (that which is not upright or in right standing with God). For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust (lean on, rely on, and be confident) in the Lord and do good; so shall you dwell in the land and feed surely on His faithfulness, and truly you shall be fed. Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires and secret petitions of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord [roll and repose each care of your load on Him]; trust (lean on, rely on, and be confident) also in Him and He will bring it to pass. And He will make your uprightness and right standing with God go forth as the light, and your justice and right as [the shining sun of] the noonday. Be still and rest in the Lord; wait for Him and patiently lean yourself upon Him; fret not yourself because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked devices to pass.
- Frustration. 2015. In Wikipedia. Retrieved January 17, 2015, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frustration
- Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.