An Honest Account of Love, Grief and Walking With God
Finding God's Goodness in Life's Disappointments

Monday, September 5, 2011

Letting Go of Disappointments - Kerrville Daily Times

 September 2 in the Kerrville Daily Times



Letting Go of Disappointments
Kathleen Maxwell
September 2,2011
Have you ever been disappointed in life? I believe all of us face disappointments of varying degrees quite frequently. Some are huge and life altering and others may be small. As we embrace the letting go process in a godly way we can find jewels that will make us rich in life.
There are many different kinds of disappointments we face. Perhaps someone we expected to spend the rest of our life with is gone due to death or divorce. Maybe cut backs at work cause you to loose your job. That is not only a financial disappointment but an ending of how you spent your days.
 Perhaps you’ve been praying for someone to be healed and that hasn’t happened yet or doesn’t happen and you are disappointed in God.
 What about a relationship coming to an end?
Have you ever depended on someone to do something or had an expectation of them and they disappointed you?
Another big disappointment is abuse, either verbal or physical.  People that were suppose to love and care for you don’t, for whatever reason; usually because of their own hurt and disappointments that have never been dealt with.
Sometimes we make mistakes and we disappoint ourselves by how we act or words we say. Then there are disappointments when someone says something insensitive or ugly.  Perhaps someone you love makes a wrong choice and it costs us personally.
Unfilled expectations of people can lead to disappointments. We expect someone to have God’s heart for us. We expect godly people to treat us with love and compassion. 
People are people and they will disappoint us. I know I have probably disappointed many throughout my life and I am very sorry. My heart is to always walk in a way that pleases God; nevertheless I am human and I fail at times. I admit I sometimes ask God for “five minutes in the flesh” but He never  gives me permission to respond that way!
The big question we are confronted with when we face disappointments is what road will we take when we face the crossroads of disappointments? I feel there are three major roads we can take when we arrive at the crossroads of disappointments. Which path do we choose? I’ve discovered three major choices and have been down all of them.
1. Blaming Drive
2.The Questioning Lane
3. Acceptance Road
On Blaming Drive, I have found the opportunity to blame others, get mad and angry, become bitter, loose hope. Often times we blame God, get mad at him and accuse Him for something He never did. We simply live in a fallen world and will have disappointments in this life. The Pharisees were disappointed in God and they missed Jesus.  They expected God to send the Savior one way and God sent him in a manger.  Disappointments can cause us to miss Jesus in our circumstances.
The Questioning Road I have found keeps me stuck. This road is often characterized by paralysis of analysis. It frequently says,”Why would God do this to me?” “Why is this happening to me?  Why have I prayed for healing and it hasn’t happened?  Where is God? 
When my mother became ill with a debilitating disease I camped here for a while. Finally I realized that Jesus asks God why and God didn’t answer Him; so why would I think He owes me an explanation?
The best choice is The Acceptance Road and it says, “It Is What It Is” and declares “God, you are big enough to fix it. You are big enough to heal my disappointment.” I love a quote by author Graham Cooke. He says, “God allows in His wisdom, what he could easily prevent in his power.” When I remember that quote, it quiets my soul. Romans 8:28 promises that our disappointments will work together for my good. This is the faith road. This is the road that allows us to let go of our disappointments. Often times God is at work in our lives and we simply do not see it unless we accept disappointments.
Letting go is not a one time event and is often times a process. The greater the disappointment, the longer the process. The great news is God always supplies us with the grace we need to let go. Letting go declares our trust in God. Also, in the process, when we seek God in our pain, the process makes us rich. 
Psalms 84 is a passage that has brought me great comfort and direction in times of disappointment. It reminds me of the benefits of dealing with our disappointments. Psalms 84:5 says,Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
   whose hearts are set on pilgrimage.
As they pass through the Valley of Baka, (tears)
   they make it a place of springs;
   the autumn rains also cover it with pools.
 They go from strength to strength,
   till each appears before God in Zion.”
As we depend on God for the strength we need to let go of disappointing situations, He will supply. He says in II Corinthians 12:9  states, “His grace is sufficient.”  As we set our hearts on embracing the journey,surrendering and accepting we must focus on the fact that it is a season and will pass. We will pass through the valley of tears. It is not the destination. In this, we establish our faith and grow stronger;therefore, challenges can actually be a catalyst to help us grow when we see them from God’s perspective.
Another benefit of letting go is we can become a source of encouragement for others. Not only do springs bubble up but also scripture tells us we will be a constant supply for others. We must extract all we can from our challenges. 
As I have stated in previous articles, letting go in life is simply a part of a healthy life. What do you need to let go of today? What pricked your heart?
(Letting Go of Disappointments will be continued September 16th)

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