Life Lesson 31: When I set the Lord continually before me I am able to build reminders…
Life Lesson 32: There is no doubt about it, disappointments are hard. They are the most unwelcoming experiences on the path of life. The good news is, we don't have to face them alone. I am learning that disappointment is one of life's greatest teachers because it forces me to search out divine wisdom instead of my own. Disappointments allow me to draw closer to God, and they remind me to rest in the faithful promises of the Lord who has sovereign control over every situation that I will ever face in life.
“But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit.”
Disappointments come into our lives for a reason. The dark seasons will force us to look within ourselves and consider why God would allow the trouble. When I consider the Lord’s promise in Jeremiah 17:7-8, my trust is renewed with hope and confidence knowing that I am blessed by the Lord even in times of adversity. When I don’t understand the situation that I face, I try to set my heart on trusting God, knowing that He is in full control of all the details of my life. I allow His glorious presence and His Word to shine a bright light on my path.
Trusting God along life’s journey will help us to find peace in our circumstances. It is in that trust that we are able to place our hope on the promises of a sovereign Lord who has full knowledge of the difficulty we face. It is during hard times that we most need to anchor our hope on the goodness of the Lord who alone can see us through the disappointments. But don’t wait for a problem to happen before you turn to God. Do it now so that when challenges come into your life, you have the power of God on your side to see you through. Your initimate connection to the Lord will enable you to face the disappointment with confidence and courage.
When we put our trust in God, despite our circumstances, He reassures us of His presence and He nurtures us with His love and grace so that we can flourish into our highest potential for His glory. Although it’s hard to praise God when things are not going our way, we must remember to praise Him through the difficulty so that we can see the situation from a heavenly perspective. Let us take courage and hold steadfast to our faith knowing that as children of the living God, our hope will be rewarded (Proverbs 23:18 NLT).
In the book of Romans, we are told that “God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love [him] and are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28 NLT). Allow that Scripture to penetrate your soul for a while so that every time you face a disappointment in life, you can call to mind that encouraging verse and respond with confidence that God knows where you are, what you are going through, and has already worked out the situation for your benefit. Remember, nothing that you have been through is a waste of time, an accident, or a coincidence. The dark valleys in our lives are divinely orchestrated to bring us into oneness with our Creator and to fulfill our God-given purpose. When I think on Romans 8:28, I am reminded that disappointments are temporary. They are strategically placed in my life to teach me to trust God as I obediently follow the path He has paved for me. The Lord never promised that following Him would be easy, but He did promise that He would never fail nor abandon His children who put their faith and trust in Him (Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV).
If you are living with disappointment and you are frustrated with the circumstances of your life, don’t lose hope. This is not the end of your story. The problem you are facing right now can turn out for your good when you put your trust in Jesus. You may be thinking: “What good can come from what I’m going through right now?” And that’s a fair question because, in your earthly thinking, everything seems bleak, but only God can see the big picture and only He knows the end of your story. That is why we must surrender our circumstances to the Lord because He alone is faithful to see us through. The psalmist reminds us of God’s holy presence when he wrote:
“Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me”(Psalm 23:4 NLT).
As you walk through your darkest valley, keep in view the fact that “God is [your] refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1 NIV). My earnest hope is that perhaps someday you will look back and realize why you had to go through that difficulty and praise God for it. Like the psalmist, you may find yourself one day saying, “It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees” (Psalm 119:71 NIV). Remember, the Lord doesn’t allow disappointments into our lives to harm us. Instead, we should see them as opportunities that are presented to teach and empower us for the kingdom of God.
The experiences we learn from disappointments may be the very lessons God uses to lead us into our calling. Your story may be the testimony God uses to bring hope and inspiration to the world. It is your story that may make a positive difference in someone’s life. It is your story that may encourage someone to never give up despite life’s challenges, knowing that the God of the universe has a great plan and purpose for your life.
“The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.” Psalm 138:8 NKJV
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