When I was a younger man, one of the things I liked about golf is the feeling that I got when I have a really good round! One of the things I didn’t like about golf was the feeling that I got when I have a really bad round after a really good one. My expectations were thwarted and I was DISAPPOINTED!. Now I am much older (and wiser?) and, while I still like golf, I am seldom more than momentarily disappointed in my game. Missed putt, yes. Wayward drive, yes. But I’ll still play. I say that if you don’t like disappointments, maybe golf isn’t your game!
Wait a minute. How can we avoid disappointment? What about all those events or experiences in our lives that didn’t quite turn out the way you hoped or expected. Ever been to a casino? Were you ever disappointed with choices your children make or made? How about choices politicians make? Or, for that matter, your church, your pastor, your best friend? How about God? Any disappointment there? Expectations not met? Help didn’t come? Your loved one was not cured? Prayers went unanswered?
In his book Disappointment With God: Three Questions No One Asks Aloud , Philip Yancey writes: “…no one is immune to the downward spiral of disappointment. It happens to…ordinary Christians: first comes disappointment, then a seed of doubt, then a response of anger or betrayal. We begin to question whether God is trustworthy, whether we can really stake our lives on him.”
In Matthew 7:7, we are told to: “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.8“For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.…”
Yeah, what about that? You say you have been knocking until your knuckles are raw and nothing has happened! You ask and ask and…nothing. Our expectations too often blind us to the loving way God works. His time is not our time and that bothers us. Why not now? I am hurting now! My wife needs a cure now!
We are told to come like little children, but that doesn’t mean we must act that way. Throw your little tantrum, stomp your foot, hold your breath, do anything except trust that your prayer will be answered in God’s good time. You won’t make it happen.
If your life is ruled by disappointments and impatience then it could look a bit like this picture — lifeless, used up. How do you overcome such adversity? I believe that part of the answer rests in this prayer I came across recently…something to think about:
“When all is darkness and we feel our weakness and helplessness, give us the sense of Your presence, Your love, and Your strength. Help us to have patience and perfect trust in Your protecting love and strengthening power, so that nothing may frighten, disappoint or worry us, for, living close to You, we shall see Your hand, Your purpose, Your will through all things. Amen.