Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (Romans 5:1-5 NASB)
Last week I talked about choosing life. Sometimes that's not an easy thing to do, particularly when we are disappointed or going through a season of suffering.
As Jesus approached the cross he asked his Father to "save him from this hour". He knows, however, that there is no other way so he willingly submits himself to what lies ahead in order to bring glory to his Father (John 12:27-28). He could have run, but he choose to embrace his suffering.
We don't know everything about King David's life but we do know he'd suffered a lot of misunderstanding and rejection. Somehow, through it all, he remained focussed on God, his Father, and this enabled him to write psalms of worship, love and adoration. He could have run, but he choose to embrace his suffering.
The truth is, we too suffer disappointment and experience suffering. We are let down by people, we are hurt, we are taken advantage of, we lose heart and become weary.
We can run from it or we can embrace it.
We can respond by holding it at a distance and building defences around our heart which will ultimately lead to a hard heart. We can take it into us and drown in self pity, often leading to shame and condemnation. Or we can have hope. A hope that is rooted and grounded in him, which then becomes an open door allowing him to pour his love freely into our open heart.
If you are feeling the weight of disappointment can I first encourage you to look to him. Trust him, put your hope in him. He is there to carry you through your suffering and disappointment. The situation may not change or go away but it will diminish when we focus on him rather than on our troubles.
James encourages us to "consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds". That sounds tough. It will be if we try and face it on our own but when we go through things with him we discover that his joy begins to full our heart.
At the end of Job, after all the suffering and turmoil there is a beautiful revelation that comes out of Job's transformed heart and dependency on God. He'd experienced a loving Father.
"Listen now, and I will speak; I will question you, and you will answer me. 'My ears had heard of you, but now my eyes have seen you'".
Living with disappointment or going through a season of suffering is not easy. My encouragement is to put your hope in him, that hope will not disappoint you. It is the way our heart becomes open to receive his love.
A Father to YOU is a signpost to the heart of the Perfect Father. When we became Christians we were given the right to become children of God (John 1:12). Sadly, many of us fail to take up that right and instead continue to live as slaves or orphans. But our true destiny is being sons and daughters who have a permanent place in the Father's family. This blog is an encouragement to help you know who God really is and who you really are.