This past week, I felt the sting of disappointment – not once, but twice. I was waiting to hear back from two different publishers who were considering several Bible studies I had written. I had been praying for God’s will in both of these situations, and a peace regardless of whether it would be a yes or a no. (My heart’s desire was for a yes.) I received two no’s three days apart. Ouch…
Even though I had prayed for God’s will, there was still a moment of disappointment after reading the emails. I truly wanted God’s will, but I had hoped that a yes was His will. Yet, He gave me His peace as He reminded me that He has a plan for my life, and His plan is perfect. I don’t want something that’s not His best for me.
God has used these two rejections to draw me into a deeper relationship of trust with Him. I trust His plans for me – even though they might be different than what I had hoped for.
A few months before graduating from Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas, I was looking for a job in ministry. I prayed for a job in Dallas, but God closed one door after another. I was discouraged and disappointed. But God had a better plan for me – a job in Memphis that was (is) the perfect fit! I’m so glad God didn’t give me what I wanted. I would have missed the blessings He has given me here at First Evan.
We all face disappointment – we don’t get that job we wanted, or that house we wanted, or the diagnosis we wanted, or the response we wanted from someone. But God knows what’s best. We can rest in His love and the plan He has laid out for us.
This week as I was reading in The Valley of Vision, this prayer reinforced my trust in God in the midst of a disappointing week. (From Choices, p. 193)
“Thou hast done for me all things well, hast remembered, distinguished, indulged me. All my desires have not been gratified, but Thy love denied them to me when fulfilment of my wishes would have proved my ruin or injury… Thou hast often wiped away my tears, restored peace to my mourning heart, chastened me for my profit. All Thy work for me is perfect, and I praise Thee.”
Paul said something similar in Romans 8:28:
“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
I’m grateful that God knows best.
What Scripture(s) or readings have encouraged you in the midst of disappointment?