Shun discouragement. One of Satan’s most powerful tools is discouragement. Whisperings of ‘you can’t do it,’ ‘you’re no good,’ ‘it’s too late,’ ‘what’s the use?’ or “things are hopeless’ are tools of destruction. Satan would like you to believe that because you’ve made one mistake it’s all over. He wants you to quit trying. It is important that discouragement is cast out of [our] lives. This may take a decided amount of work and energy, but it can be accomplished.

Marvin J. Ashton,”While They are Waiting,” Ensign, May 1988

I have learned recently the importance of hope. Hope is one of the greatest tools we have to fight discouragement. My husband has been out of work and I find that my attitude is better when we have a specific position to hope for. When he tells me, “I’ve applied for every job I can, and there isn’t anything else out there,” that’s when I get discouraged. Even though I know that the Lord will take care of us, that’s when the darkness overpowers me.

I think this example can be applied with any aspect of our lives. I think we need to find specific reasons to give us hope. Maybe we can try to do things differently. Maybe we can get other’s to help us. There has to be something we can change. Finding reasons to hope and actively trying to shun discouragement, as Elder Ashton says, requires work and energy, but I love that a prophet of God tells us that we can do it.

I have always loved how our Father in Heaven has organized our lives into days and nights, and how mankind has created other units of time like weeks and months. Each new day is a chance to wipe the slate clean and try again. I love Mondays because it is a chance to say, “This week will be better.” As long as we have a future, there’s always hope. And since our Savior Jesus Christ has given us the gift of immortal life, there’s always a future.