We are all human. We set goals, we envision success. What do you do when it all comes crashing down? I recently experienced a deep disappointment. My ninth grandchild went to heaven in his 7th month in the womb. His middle name was my name.
It was sudden. It was unthinkable. The pregnancy was perfect. My daughter-in-law had to deliver that child and my son had to bury that child.
Disappointments are real and, unfortunately, unforeseen.
What are the secrets to managing disappointments?
1) Always TRUST.
- There is a difference in “faith” and “trust.” Faith is looking forward to a desired outcome. Trust is looking backward that God holds the answers to any outcome.
2) Don't BLAME.
- Don’t blame yourself, others, or God. We feel better when we can find a scapegoat to blame:
-A person who didn’t do their job.
-Something you think you could have done differently.
-Anger at why God never showed up.
- Blaming is useless. It poisons your outlook and can take years to detoxify. Blame cannot change anything. It can only ruin your self-worth, relationships and spiritual life.
- David lost a child. He prayed and fasted until he died. Then, when he died, David arose, washed himself, anointed himself, and went into the temple to worship. Worship is a great secret in overcoming disappointment.
- We will never understand “why.” We see “through a glass darkly.” What we DO know is, “He is GOOD, and His lovingkindness endures forever.”
4) Focus on the FUTURE.
- The Lord gave Israel 30 days to mourn for Moses. Then, He said, “Arise, go over this Jordan.”
- You need time to contemplate your disappointment. Then, God wants to turn your vision FORWARD.
- Opportunity is the victor over disappointment. God has another “appointment” that will help to heal the hurt of a “dis-appointment.”
5) Gather your CIRCLE.
- “Circles are better than rows” (Andy Stanley). Don’t isolate yourself. Find your “circle”: your family, your small group, and your close friends.
- Be transparent with them. Verbalize your pain and disappointment. Receive their counsel and their affirmation.
- Geese that become ill never fall to the ground alone. Two other geese leave the flock and watch them until they recover. Then, the three of them rejoin another flock. IF WE HAD AS MUCH SENSE AS A GOOSE…!
We’ve made it through this personal storm, but we are still in that “30 day period.” It still seems like a bad dream.
Every day, our TRUST grows deeper. Every day, our WORSHIP seems freer. Every day, our FUTURE seems brighter. Every day, our CIRCLE gets closer.
Thousands of residents and churches lost their structures in the August flood. Many are still living with family and neighbors. Whole neighborhoods are still dark. They will rebuild.
I heard this little phrase years ago: “When you have a SETBACK, take a STEP BACK, and get ready for a COMEBACK!”
Question: Share with others who read this blog by answering this question: “What is the deepest disappointment you have ever faced, and how did the Lord help you get through it?”
You never feel the need for the Lord more than during a time of crisis. I would love to share with you a few things I have learned about how I follow the Holy Spirit here.