“They cried to You and were delivered; they trusted in, leaned on, and confidently relied on You, and were not ashamed or confounded or disappointed.” – Psalm 22:5 (AMPC)
I have yet to meet a person who has not experienced disappointment at some point in their life. Actually I have never met a person who has not experienced many disappointments in their lives. Years ago I came to a realization that being disappointed is not an option that we can say “no” to. It is a part of living on this earth. However, we do have more than one option as to how we am going to deal with disappointment when it comes our way.
There are many ways that we can become disappointed. The center of our disappointment is that something or someone has let us down. This disappointment may have caused a minor wound or it may have caused a deep hurtful wound. No matter the size of the wound – we still have a wound that we must find a way to heal.
Too often we allow the wound to fester and we don’t get the proper treatment for it. Without the proper treatment the wound will not only not get better, it will get worse. Several years ago my husband had a wound on the side of his hip. He thought that he was taking proper care of it but did not go to the doctor to get it checked out. Several months passed and he still had this wound that really wasn’t getting any better. My husband started to feel sick and finally I convinced him to seek medical treatment. Not only did his wound fester – it caused an infection that ate his hip bone away and nearly took his life. I share this as it shows us how something we think is minor can end up causing major problems for us if not dealt with properly.
Disappointments and Our Emotional Health
Dealing with disappointments is emotionally draining. Have you ever been disappointed and kept playing the scenario over in your mind. Did you think about how it could of been or how you think it should of been? I have done both and trust me when I say — it did not make anything any better. In fact it led to feelings of bitterness and even resentment. Ouch!
Time is spent thinking about all the details of how that person let us down – is wasted time. It does nothing that will in any way benefit us. Not only does it cause hurt and painful feelings (bitterness and resentment), if not dealt with, it will have ill effects on our health.
Disappointments and Our Physical Health
Sitting in our disappointments plays havoc on our bodies and on our health. When we hold on to the disappointment we are setting ourselves up to live with unneeded stress. The stress that we put ourselves under can lead to headaches, gastrointestinal difficulties, sweating for no reason, hot and cold flashes, a sense that we need to vomit and feeling tired and lethargic. So often we suffer from physical ailments and we don’t realize that it stems from holding on to our disappointments.
Disappointments and Our Relationships
One of the major impacts that holding onto my disappointments has had on my life is in relationships with other people. Not only did they cause me to feel bitterness and resentment – they caused me to shut down and to isolate. They put a wedge between me and the other person. Most of the time the person that disappointed me wasn’t even aware of it and was bewildered with why I was distancing myself from them.
Trust in Him
I have learned (and re-learned) that people are going to disappoint me in this life. In addition I have learned that God is forever faithful. One of the areas that I have worked on for years is to watch my expectations – especially when it focuses on others. When I put my trust in Him and focus on Him – disappointments don’t hit me as often. If they do hit me – It is so much easier to let them go.
“Fools give full vent to their rage but the wise bring calm in the end” – Proverbs 29:11 NIV
I don’t want to be a fool and I have the option to not be one. So do you. In order for us to be wise we must put our trust in God and give Him the disappointments we are holding onto.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” – Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV
It’s a Choice
Can you relate to having had disappointments in your life? Did you hold on to them? Or did you let them go? My hope for you (and for myself) is that we would be quick to turn our disappointments over to God. When we are tempted to replay the scenarios over and over again in our minds, may we “halt them”.
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8
God has given to us free will and with that He has given us choice. We can choose to sit in our disappointments and allow them to fester and destroy our health (physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually). The alternative is to make the choice to press forward and gain peace, health and even restored relationships. Which are you going to choose?
Father God, thank You for Your Word and how you use it to lead and guide me. I confess that I have had expectations on others and when not met walked around in disappointment. I am currently holding on to (share with God what/who you are disappointed in/with).
Lord forgive me for holding onto the disappointment and allowing it to fester in my heart. I surrender it to You and ask that You heal my heart and any other effects that it has had in and on my life.
I know that man is fallible and that You are not. Help me to focus on You and seek You first instead of seeking others. When my thoughts are scattered and off course, I pray that You will nudge me and help me to refocus. Help me to watch where I am putting my expectations and correct me when they are being misplaced.
Lord, my desire is to honor you with my life. I am so very grateful for the never ending love and the grace and mercy that You gift to me.
In Jesus’ Name ~~ Amen
Do you struggle with having expectations and holding on to disappointments when the expectations are not met? Is there a disappointment that you need to ask God to help you let go of today? Let me know in the comments as I would love to hear from you and pray for you too
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