Disappointment! There’s a lot of disappointment in this world of ours these days. Are you facing disappointment in your life today? Are you disappointed with your family, relationships, work and the people that surround you on a daily basis?
One of the unfortunate byproducts of living in a sinful, fallen world is that every person, Christian or not, experiences pain and suffering and disappointment in this life. From failed relationships to unfulfilled dreams, life can be filled with sorrow and disappointment. In fact, Jesus assured us of it: “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). No one is immune.
In overcoming disappointments, it is important to keep them in perspective. Even though we cannot eliminate suffering or disappointment this side of heaven, it can become less formidable when viewed from a different vantage point. The first thing to keep in mind is this: no amount of suffering or disappointment we experience in this life can ever undo what God has done for us in Christ. Apart from Scripture, it is very difficult to have a proper perspective on suffering and disappointment, and these things will rarely make sense to those unacquainted with God’s Word. Neither psychology nor philosophy can offer a sufficient explanation for it. No social science can work restoration on the soul; only God can do this (Psalm 23:3). The truth is, our trials and disappointments, though we may not like them, do serve a purpose. It is through trials that we learn patience and humility, endurance and trust—virtues that strengthen us and develop godly character.
Also, it is during the difficult times that we learn to rely on God and experience firsthand the absolute trustworthiness of His Word. We also learn the truth of what Paul taught: God’s power is at its strongest when we are at our weakest (2 Corinthians 12:9). As A. W. Tozer observed, “If the truth were known, the saints of God in every age were only effective after they had been wounded.”
Our time on earth is a small fraction of our eternal journey. It is faith that allows us to see the unseen. That’s why faith is such an indispensable element of the Christian life. Now, even though disappointments plague us until our final heartbeat, we can minimize them by understanding and applying the principle of reaping and sowing found throughout the Bible. “He who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward” (Proverbs 11:18), whereas “he who sows wickedness reaps trouble” (Proverbs 22:8). When we faithfully live in accordance with God’s perfect Word, we forgo bringing unnecessary troubles and disappointments into our lives in the first place. As the psalmist declared, “How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your Word” (Psalm 119:9).
It also helps to remember the absolute sovereignty of God. Everything occurs either by His prescription or permission and in perfect accordance with His sovereign purposes and unfathomable ways (Romans 11:33). Being a child of God means we are never alone in our struggles. (Hebrews 13:5) As Maurice Roberts stated, “The degree of a Christian’s peace of mind depends upon his spiritual ability to interpose the thought of God between himself and his anxiety.” If we keep our mind on God, nothing can steal our peace.